An art prize that will honour your contemporary 2D creation

Presented by Caloundra Regional Gallery, with over $40,000 in prizes, the Sunshine Coast Art Prize is now open for entries.

The Sunshine Coast Art Prize, presented by Caloundra Regional Gallery, is now inviting artists and makers from across Australia to enter the prestigious prize.

Jo Duke, Gallery Director at Caloundra Regional Gallery, told ArtsHub: ‘The prize is a national award and it allows us to showcase our local artists alongside their peers.’

In celebration of Australian contemporary 2D creations, the Major Prize offers a substantial $25,000 in prize money with the winning creation to be acquired by the gallery. Non-acquisitive prizes include the Highly Commended Prize ($5,000), the People’s Choice category ($2,500), and an Artist Residency located in breathtaking Montville, Sunshine Coast.

‘From the mountains to the sea and across – the really nice thing about the residency is that the artist is given the opportunity to go and stay in this beautiful place in Montville, in the hills.’

Duke added, ‘It allows the artist time to centre themselves; to think, and to make.’

Duke explained the 2D medium, rather than remaining static, has expanded ‘not just from acrylic painting and oil painting but it also includes prints and textile, drawing and photography. It widens the aspect for our makers and allows them different ways to communicate.’


In celebration of the art prize’s 15-year anniversary, Duke said there is a joy in reflecting and honouring the collection’s history.

‘To have these works and be able to tell this contemporary vision that has happened over the fifteen years is exciting,’ she said. ‘There has just been so many fabulous artworks that we wouldn’t have been able to acquire without the prize.’

‘To have people like Scott Redford in our collection – who is a really important maker. He is based around the Gold Coast area and reflects that aesthetic.

‘We have Tony Albert who is a really significant First Nations artist looking at urban space and identity. Miles Hall is a really interesting maker who has come out of the Brisbane College of Art. He has this really interesting way of looking at contemporary placement, of people and place.’

Duke said the prize exhibition was the perfect platform to allow for ‘the gathering of voices in one space.’

Uncle Jack Charles and Jandamarra Cadd – winner of the 2019 People’s Choice Award sponsored by Caloundra Chamber of Commerce. Photos: Ben Vos Productions.

This year Caloundra Regional Gallery will also reach an important milestone.

‘It’s also the gallery’s 20th anniversary, and in August and we will be celebrating the gallery and the Sunshine Coast Art Prize component of the collection,’ Duke said.

‘There will be a publication profiling the gallery’s history and the Sunshine Coast Art Collection. The gallery directors, past and present, will come together to showcase a Director’s cut from the collection to enhance the conversation about the collection and the gallery’s role in maintaining, researching and building.

‘That’s the joy of having a collection, you get an understanding of what the artists are talking about over the last 15 to 20 years. But it’s also the judges too who have come in and said this is why this work is important.’

The judge for this year’s art prize is Tracey Cooper-Lavery, Gallery Director of HOTA Home of the Arts on the Gold Coast.


The national call for entries are open until Monday 18 May 2020. Artists will be notified in early June of the outcome with the Sunshine Coast Art Prize Exhibition to run from Thursday 20 August to Sunday 11 October.

The official opening of the exhibition will be held on Thursday 27 August, 6-8pm with the winners to be announced Thursday 8 October, 6-8pm.

‘The Sunshine Coast is a very interesting, eclectic area of makers and we have extraordinary artists within our region. The Sunshine Coast Art Prize is a great way to engage in a national conversation around contemporary art for us all.’ Duke said.

To enter this prestigious national art prize head to the Caloundra Regional Gallery website.