Beyond the Horizon

Image source: Photographer Cooper Brady

What’s beyond the horizon for the  Sunshine Coast’s leading Arts and Cultural Festival? Here’s a taste of the rejigged program.

The show goes on and although reimagined and rejigged, Horizon Festival remains a spectacular tour de force relevant to the times.

In the interest of community safety, whilst considering the August lockdown, and the restrictions in place, Horizon Festival organisers made the difficult decision not to proceed at that time. 

Featuring hundreds of artists, the 6th annual event was shaping up to be an incredible 10 days. It’s now time to look beyond the horizon to see what events, artworks, and experiences will still be happening across the Sunshine Coast over the coming months presented by some of the creative partners, along with a few re-imagined Horizon Festival features.

A focus of the festival has always been to engage the community and this year’s festival program featured two incredible participatory projects that the organisers couldn’t let slip by. 

While not being able to present these projects to the public, participants will still have the opportunity to dazzle their friends and families in a pared-back way.

A few months ago, auditions were held for I’ve Been Meaning to Ask You, a riotous theatrical experience full of questions asked by young people and answered by adults. The hunt for a group of 9–13-year-olds to perform in the show at the Festival produced an unbelievable cast of stars-in-the-making. At the time of the event cancellation, rehearsals were well underway, and the show was nearing perfection. As it didn’t feel right to completely pull the pin on all of their hard work, the decision was made to go ahead with an exclusive showing to close friends and family, under COVID-19 restrictions. 

Similarly, the Common People Dance Project had been working with locals who put their hands up to learn a series of over-the-top dance routines to some of the greatest hits of the ‘80s and ‘90s as an homage to the legendary Rock Eisteddfods of decades past. 

Although the Sunshine Coast team was unable to dance up a storm in the Wonderland Spiegeltent, Common People Dance Eisteddfod will also be presenting a scaled-back show for close friends and family, before our spandex clad dance gladiators head to Brisbane Festival on Sunday 19 September for the South-East Queensland dance battle-royale. 

Two extraordinary visual art exhibitions will take place over the coming months, both of which have been slightly reimagined and on display for an extended period.

Climate Change and its devastating impact on the earth is the most pressing global issue of our time and Final Call will present new creative works collaboratively conceptualised and developed by six leading Queensland artists: Judy Watson, Robert Andrew, Courtney Coombs, Caitlin Franzmann, Courtney Scheu and Itamar Freed, responding to Climate Change. 

Presented amongst the stunning natural environment of Maroochy Regional Bushland Botanic Garden, Final Call offers a moment of reflection and hope in the face of environmental crisis. 

Dive deep into the artists’ creative process through an innovative digital experience with a 360-degree view of each work, artist interviews and intriguing insights on the project. 

Explore the exhibition in person until Sunday 17 October 2021 at the Maroochy Regional Bushland Botanic Gardens and online.

For the past nine years, Sunshine Coast photographer Keith Hamlyn has been capturing portraits of people in the sea, documenting their collective connection to the ocean through a stunning portrait series called iSeaU. 

Originally planned as an outdoor display during Horizon Festival, you can still experience the power and intimacy of the sea through the lens, at Caloundra Regional Gallery from Friday 15 October to Sunday 5 December 2021 with a smaller collection of works displayed in lightboxes at Subtropic Studio in Caloundra.

For me a big part of being Australian or for that matter human, is our relationship to water. Even if we come from the desert, the moment we meet the water there is a transformation, and for each of us we are taken somewhere of our own knowing. In this imagery I hope to capture people in that space, so that perhaps we the observers can search out where these subjects have gone and truly see them for the first time. 

– Keith Hamlyn, Photographer, iSeaU

Horizon Festival also works with an array of creative partners and supports them to deliver their events. Visit the website to find out more about these upcoming events: 

Kabi Kabi Connections

Sunshine Coast Art Prize 2021

Sites of Connection

Reading Between the Lines

Bravo to the event organisers and participants for ensuring at least some of the show must go on!

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