Re:ACTIVATE Aspiring Artists

Bring your artistic vision to life!

Through Re:ACTIVATE Aspiring Artists, Ōtautahi’s young people have the chance to see their artwork concepts come to life and put on public display. Each year, SCAPE Public Art transforms submitted designs from primary and high school students into real-life pieces of large-scale public art.

Are you our next aspiring artist?

Creating art is a powerful way for students to process their feelings and experiences, reconnecting to each other and their city during these changing times.

This is an opportunity for young artists to explore the creative process and come up with a design for an artwork that shows their unique perspective on the theme. There are two categories open for entry: Re:ACTIVATE Sculpture and Re:ACTIVATE Mural. Re:ACTIVATE Sculpture is a competition for individual students to develop an idea for sculptural artworks, which the winners will get to create under the guidance of SCAPE Public Art’s expert industry partners. Re:ACTIVATE Mural, supported by Resene, gives participants the opportunity to create a large-scale mural concept, which the winners will then work alongside a local mural artist to bring to life on billboards in The Arts Centre Te Matatiki Toi Ora.

Next steps: Read through the brief and start exploring design concepts based on the theme.

The theme for SCAPE Public Art Season 2023 is The GiftWhen we think of gifts, we often think of things: physical presents, given from one hand to another to signify a special occasion or to honour a relationship. 

But do all gifts have to be objects? Can they be gestures such as kind words of encouragement, sharing or doing something nice for a friend? Experiences? Stories? What do you think are the small gifts you might give and receive in your everyday life? Can you give someone the gift of time?

In tikanga Māori, koha is a gift, present, offering, contribution or donation. Koha reflects the mana of both the giver and receiver. It’s all about reciprocity: giving something to later receive something in return, building and supporting relationships.

Entries for Re:ACTIVATE Aspiring Artists open on 18 July and close on 30 August. Find the full brief here: Re:ACTIVATE 2023 

Ways to enter:



Sarah Ackerley is the Education and Community Engagement Manager at SCAPE Public Art. She has a background in Fine Arts and education and is available for outreach visits to your school to share her expertise, discuss the themes and work on design concepts with students. Email to book a session for your school or community group.






Artworks will be installed in Te Matatiki Toi Ora, The Arts Centre. Site images available soon.


Re:ACTIVATE Aspiring Artists 2022 Winners

Re:ACTIVATE 2022 winners from left: Secret Ainsworth-Mason, Focus 2022; and Adele Sherborne, Ccino & Ash 2022; Oli Aikawa, Wheelbarrow Of A Bag Of Rocks 2022; and Liana Martin, The Tree Of Work 2022.

Re:ACTIVATE Aspiring Artists 2021 Winners

Re:ACTIVATE 2021 winners from left: Agatha Weston, aged 16, Rangi Ruru Girls’ School, Te Ao Rangimarie Davis, aged 8, Te Pā o Rākaihautū School and Sienna Oshannessey, aged 16 from Rangi Ruru Girls’ School, pictured with Anna Galloway, Councillor for Halswell Ward.

Our 2020 Re:ACTIVATE Aspiring Artists

Re:ACTIVATE 2020 winners from left: Yzza Batac, aged 11, Merrin School, Annabelle Britt, aged 11, Selwyn House School and Mollie Shaw, aged 18, Rangi Ruru Girls’ School, pictured with Lewis Bradford Consulting Engineers Director, Helen Trappitt.

Check out all the entries for Re:ACTIVATE 2020 here!

Our 2019 Re:ACTIVATE Aspiring Artists

We heard from a record number of aspiring artists during Re:ACTIVATE 2019!

The winning five entries were exhibited in central Christchurch at Hack Circle, on the corner of Cashel and High streets, as part of SCAPE Public Art’s annual Season 2019, thanks to the support of Lewis Bradford Consulting Engineers, Christchurch City Council and Christchurch City Libraries.

Re:ACTIVATE 2019 winners, supporters and organisers, from left: Rosetta Brown, Hazel White, Emily Higham, Helena McCondach, Cr Anne Galloway, Tessa Marshall, Alex Sands, Helen Trappitt and Josie Whelan. (Absent: Georgina Jolly).

Re:ACTIVATE 2019 winners

Re:Activate 2019 winners
Left to right: Junior category (Years 1 to 8) Alex Sands, of Little River School, We Are One!; Tessa Marshall, of Ao Tawhiti Unlimited Discovery School, Sticks of Rock. Senior category (Years 9 to 13) Emily Higham, of Lincoln High School, Physiological Manipulation of Space; Helena McCondach, Lincoln High School, Negotiation; Rosetta Brown, left, and Hazel White (absent: Georgina Jolly), Rangi Ruru Girls’ School, Strength in Sisterhood.