Internationally renowned, home-grown Brisbane artist Lindy Lee will create the signature masterpiece for the art installations to be showcased as part of the transformational $3.6 billion Queen’s Wharf Brisbane development.
An Australian painter and sculptor of Chinese heritage who’s recent $14 million commission from the National Gallery of Australia is the most expensive work to be acquired by the NGA, Ms Lee will craft a unique, 8-metre, 8,000-kilogram bronze sculpture for the George Street Atrium entrance to the QWB precinct.
Titled ‘Being Swallowed by the Milky Way’ the stunning oblong sculpture will feature thousands of tiny holes puncturing its bronze surface. At night it will appear as a shimmering, light-filled galaxy of silver and gold stars.
“On a personal level, this is the most significant commission I’ve ever been awarded,” Ms Lee said.
“When I left Brisbane in the late 70s to get an art education there was not a lot of cultural inspiration.
“Now I feel I have come full circle, returning as an established artist to a dynamic, culturally advanced city.
“I am currently working on some prestigious overseas commissions, but the sculpture I have designed for Queen’s Wharf Brisbane is an important project to me. It will be a joy,” she said.
“I am so proud to be included in this unique, creative project that will be such a sophisticated addition to my hometown.”
Lindy Lee’s ‘Being Swallowed by the Milky Way’ is the first artworks to be revealed by The Star Entertainment Group as part of its multi-million-dollar public art procurement program. More artists will be revealed in coming months.
Highly regarded art figure Philip Bacon AO led The Specialist Artistic Advisory panel alongside art curator and director of the Institute of Modern Art Liz Nowell and respected indigenous artist and administrator Avril Quaill to curate the standout collection of artworks.
“Securing a major Lindy Lee sculpture is a coup for the city,” Philip Bacon said.
“Lindy’s distinctive works are already found in many of the world’s greatest cities, and it is fitting that Queen’s Wharf Brisbane will be home to one of her largest and most elegant creations.
“It will truly be a must-visit attraction in its own right,” he said.
“The panel has also identified other artworks created by highly talented and respected local and international contemporary artists, which collectively will create an art-filled precinct that will be exciting, sophisticated and unique in Australia.”
The artworks will be featured across the 7.5 hectares of public space within the entertainment and tourism precinct, including waterfront areas by the Brisbane River.
The Star Entertainment Group’s Managing Director and CEO, Matt Bekier, said today’s announcement marked a defining moment in Queensland’s largest urban development.
“We and our partners are thrilled to have commissioned Lindy Lee to create the signature art piece and we look forward to revealing the other talent the advisory panel has identified,” he said.
“These artworks will be showcased to millions of people, who will visit this precinct for years to come, including for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“It will further position Brisbane, not just as an Olympic city, but as a vibrant cultural playground, complementing the Southbank precinct just a short bridge walk across the river.
“We have bold plans for art and culture to be a visitation driver for the precinct with sculptures, paintings, visual and performing arts and potentially galleries and exhibitions delivering a unique and exciting offering. “We are creating a world class tourism and entertainment destination that locals will be proud of, and interstate and international visitors will want to visit.”
The Queen’s Wharf Development is being delivered by Destination Brisbane Consortium, a joint venture between parent company, The Star Entertainment Group, and its two partners, Chow Tai Fook Enterprises and Far East Consortium.
Lindy Lee is collaborating with Urban Art Projects, also based in Brisbane to bring her eight tonne creation to life.
The artwork will be in place for the development’s planned staged opening from mid-2023.