Townsville’s largest open-air exhibition is back, with Ephemera: Seaside Sculptures opening on the Strand this Saturday.

Twenty-eight art pieces will transform the waterfront for nine days and will include the first acquisitive prize of $90,000 for one art piece.

Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill said Council was proud to be bringing Ephemera: Seaside Sculptures back to the Strand for its 20th anniversary.

“Hosting 20 years of Ephemera: Seaside Sculptures is something that Council is very proud of,” Cr Hill said.

“We are committed to bringing world-class art to Townsville to solidify our reputation as the events capital of Northern Australia, and it is great to be celebrating the 20th year of this incredible open-air exhibition at one of our most iconic locations.

“This is the first year we’ve had an acquisitive prize as part of Ephemera. The prize means that Council will own the winning piece of art and be able to install it permanently on the Strand.”

Member for Townsville and Resources Minister Scott Stewart said the Palaszczuk Government is a proud supporter of the biennial festival.

“Our Department of Tourism is getting behind the prize because we know this event brings visitors and supports the Palaszczuk Government’s Economic Recovery Plan,” Mr Stewart said.

“The Ephemera public art competition receives national recognition year-on-year and boosts Townsville’s reputation as the centre of arts and culture in Northern Australia.

Ephemera is a hugely popular part of Townsville’s events schedule and brings so many people down to Townsville’s iconic Strand, which is important for local businesses.”

Community and Cultural Development Committee chairperson Ann-Maree Greaney said this was the first year the exhibition was going by a new name.

“As part of the 20th anniversary celebrations we have a new name for this exhibition – Ephemera: Seaside Sculptures,” Cr Greaney said.

“This new name marks a new chapter for Ephemera as Council continues to make the exhibition bigger, better and more inclusive.

“Council has a strong track record of supporting art across Townsville, and Ephemera is another example of how we back artists fostering their creativity right here in North Queensland.”

Ephemera: Seaside Sculptures runs from July 17 – 25 at the Strand.

For more information head to Council’s website.