Arts-lovers and artists – get ready for a three-month program of online events thanks to the re-imagined Horizon Festival 2020.

In response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Sunshine Coast’s leading multi-arts festival has adapted its usual 10-day format to deliver a program of digital artworks, events and experiences from June to August, and there are still opportunities for local artists to get involved.

Deputy Mayor and Community Portfolio Councillor Rick Baberowski said the new-format 2020 festival was strikingly different and had been programmed to support the local arts sector.

“The ingenuity of artists and creatives really ramps up in times of trouble,” Cr Baberowski said.

“Horizon Festival 2020 will proceed in a confidently innovative format, and the remarkable line-up of experiences that will be on offer throughout the program is a reflection of the determination of our talented local artists in their response to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The festival will deliver experiences in four key streams – Homegrown, Open Air, Words and Ideas and Rewind.

2020 Streams

Homegrown: The name says it all. Homegrown will see six new works commissioned from local artists. These commissions will support local artists to develop and present new work that responds to 2020 and the extraordinary times in which we find ourselves.

Open Air: Celebrating place, Open Air is a monthly concert series, streamed from the Sunshine Coast’s most picturesque locations, featuring some of the region’s most celebrated artists.

Words and Ideas: A series of panel discussions, spoken word and conversations, Words and Ideas creates space for thoughtful discussion and the sharing of ideas.

Rewind: Join us as we Rewind and reminisce on some of Horizon Festival’s most loved events from 2018 and 2019.

All this, plus a few special projects that have been developed in response to the turbulence that is 2020.

Festival director Lynne Bradley said it had been an interesting, but thrilling ride in her first year as director.

“When I joined the festival team in October 2019, no one saw a global pandemic coming,” Ms Bradley said.

“Planning for the 2020 program was well underway when the world was tipped upside down, so it’s been an incredible couple of months working with the team and our local artists to present a new-look festival this year.

“Artists have a real opportunity to capture this extraordinary moment in time through their art and experiment with new ways of working, new forms and thinking outside the box in terms of modes of delivery.”

Each month’s program will be announced at the beginning of the month. The first program of events and experiences will be revealed on June 1.

Get the program delivered to your inbox – visit www.horizonfestival.com.au and sign-up to the e-newsletter.

Get involved

Six projects or works will be commissioned and presented over three months (June to August). If you’re a local artist and would like to get involved, expressions of interest are now open for Homegrown – Local Artist Commissions, with the first round closing on May 20.

Submissions will be accepted in three rounds, with expressions of interest for July events opening on 1 June and August events opening on 1 July.

The project, activity or experience might be a one-off event or something that happens more than once, it can take place online, in your house, your backyard, or on top of a mountain. It just needs to adhere to the current COVID-19 restrictions, and therefore be delivered at this point in time via a digital platform.

Who can apply?

Applications are welcome from established artists living and creating in the Sunshine Coast Local Government Area.

Visit www.horizonfestival.com.au for details.

Homegrown is supported the Regional Arts Development Fund (RADF), a partnership between the Queensland Government and Sunshine Coast Council to support local arts and culture in regional Queensland.

Image credit: Horizon Festival 2018, Dawn Awakening. Photo ben vos productions.

Skye Leong
Author: Skye Leong

Creativity, Community, Culture