This year we’re very proud to be celebrating our 30th year Anniversary. We’ll be adding a few more items to the festival agenda to commemorate this milestone including a special Audrey Thomas Memorial Prize of $1000 for Franklin based artists. Please join us for what promises to be another great year for the festival.

Franklin Arts Festival is an annual celebration of visual arts held in Pukekohe, showcasing the work of talented artists from not only the Franklin District, but all over New Zealand. We’re proud to say the event has grown year on year.

Planning for the 2019 Festival is well underway.  This is the 30th annual Festival.  It is a chance for any artist to exhibit in a ten day long market place that attracts patrons in large numbers.

The 2019 Festival offers all the regular sections of work.  Prize money is generous.  Judges are recognized practitioners in their field.

The Franklin community has taken the Festival to its heart and so in 2019, we honour our heritage.  This year we offer an EXTRA prize  to an artist in any class who RESIDES within the boundaries of the Franklin Local Board.

The prize honours the memory of one of our inspirational founder members and long time Patron.  Audrey Thomas was the first secretary of the Franklin Arts Festival Society.  She was a dedicated artist in paint and we display one of her works at the Festival as a mark of respect. 

We invite you to enter your artwork into the Franklin Arts Festival and we encourage you to visit the Festival from Saturday 31st August through to Sunday 8th September (1.00 pm close on the 8th).  It is a true celebration of our diverse and vibrant creative communities. It’s also an opportunity to purchase an original piece of art. All works exhibited in the festival are for sale.So we encourage you to enter your works in what will be another memorable Festival of the visual arts here in Pukekohe.

Our History

The Franklin Arts Festival Society was formed in 1989 as a non-profit organization. The Society’s purpose was twofold: To celebrate and promote the artwork of established and emerging (especially young) artists in the Franklin area; and secondly, to create and sustain an annual exhibition of quality local artwork for viewing and for sale.

The first Festival, which was held in 1990, displayed 147 paintings by Franklin artists and numerous craft stalls.  Last year, the Festival exhibited more than 800 items, in the categories of paintings, works on paper, textile arts, pottery, photography, wood turning, small sculptures, and school art.  The Festival also has a vibrant craft shop with a variety of items for sale.

The Arts Festival draws entries primarily from what was once the Franklin District of South Auckland.  But now it also receives numerous entries from artists around the Auckland Super City, the Coromandel, Waikato,  Northland, and occasionally from the South Island.

The original and subsequent committees for the Festival have followed three guide lines:

  • This is not a juried show.  Anyone can enter, either as an amateur or as a professional artist. 
  • To encourage student involvement, prizes are offered to students in a  Youth section.
  • The exhibition’s entry price remains low, so that anyone can afford to view the artwork. There is free entry for all children up to high school age.
  •  Each year the Franklin Arts Festival Society offers an art scholarship to a student at each of 3 of our local high schools to promote young artists in our community,

The Franklin Arts Festival is truly a community event.  The all-volunteer committee plus about 60-70 extra volunteers work to keep the 10-day festival going.  Sponsorship and prizes predominantly come from local businesses or individuals.  .

In 2018 when the closing date for entries was reached, over 800 pieces of art had been accepted.  The scope of the Festival has expanded to include both sculpture and glass works. Each of these sections welcomed a substantial number of entries. As always there was a fine collection of paintings and print and paperworks and each year these sections dominate the entries numerically.

The 10 day long Festival attracted some 3000 patrons

The 2019 Festival will be the 30th annual consecutive Festival.  The FAFS Committee is already planning to continue improving the display of entries. So come to Pukekohe in the first week of September to explore, discover and be inspired!

Haere Mai