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The best place to get your arts fix on the Gold Coast this weekend

Natalie O’Driscoll | July 5, 2022

With arts events popping up all over the city this weekend, Gold Coasters will be spoilt for choice when it comes to getting their cultural fix.

BIG CITY LIGHTS* | 7 to 10 July

The inaugural BIG CITY LIGHTS* will take over Southport CBD for four nights of stunning immersive audio-visual experiences, large-scale digital works, 3D-mapping and unexpected projection sites by artists working in the fields of light, installation, architecture and digital design.

The festival kicks off on Thursday night with a free-for-everyone, night-time experience, Watch Gold Coast’s CBD be transformed into hypnotic displays by leading local, national and international artists and companies including Michaela Gleave (NSW), Buchan Group (National), Jacob Leary (TAS), IKONIX (QLD), Claudio Kirac (QLD), Kirsten Baade (QLD) and Peter Thiedeke (UK / QLD) to name a few.

Southport CBD will feature five incredible “art zones,” as rooftops, building facades, alleyways, carparks and shopfronts across Nerang Street, Scarborough St, Young Street, Regent Lane and Davison Lane come alive with colourful creations. Meanwhile, some of the city’s renowned hospitality venues including Mr P.P.’s Deli & Rooftop, Vinnie’s Dive Bar and Last Night on Earth will host key installations and a vibrant line-up of live music programming.

BIG CITY LIGHTS* will be delivered by Placemakers* Gold Coast (best known for the city’s flagship annual arts festival – BLEACH*), with the new festival set to further highlight Queensland and the Gold Coast as a major cultural tourism destination to Australia and the world. More at the BIG CITY LIGHTS* website.

‘Fear Eats the Soul’ by Big City Lights* artist Michaela Gleave. Image by Remi Chauvin

‘Iridescence’ by Big City Lights* artist IKONIX

Artist Christine Slabb paints a mural at the 2021 Surface Festival

SURFACE FESTIVAL | Running now until 17 July

Surface Festival 2022 is a massive two week program of art, music and community. Visual artists of all mediums are showcasing their work across the many surfaces of Miami, with art exploding onto the footpaths, fence lines, laneways and walls. Audiences are invited to walk, ride, roll and stroll through the streets and witness the magic unfold.

The festival is all about connecting the two creative precincts of Miami, from Hillcrest Parade through to Lemana Lane with art of all forms. The program focuses on community engagement, highlighting independent locals, creatives and businesses. 80 per cent of the festival program is free to the public and all ages. Highlights of this year’s event include The Fence Line Exhibition, 100/100 Gallery Exhibition, Social Muscle Club, Paint by Numbers with Daniela Fowler, Pete Murray + The Beautiful Girls + DACY, Spirit of Miami with Granddad Jack’s, Meg Mac x Surface Festival Closing Night.

Read about two locals showcasing at the festival: Thea Skelsey and Scott Barnard.

For more information, visit the Surface Festival website.