Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre’s artworks undergo conservation work


Paintings from Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre’s celebrated art collection are currently off display, some for the first time in the Centre’s 29-year history, while they undergo specialist conservation work.

The paintings are being conserved as part of the Centre’s ongoing care and custodianship of its collection, which comprises more than 60 works by leading First Nations and contemporary Australian artists.

The collection includes national treasures from Papunya in the Northern Territory, the birthplace of the contemporary Aboriginal art movement in the late 1970s, originally commissioned for display at Expo ’88. Other works include well-known artists such as John Olsen, Joe Furlonger, Gordon Bennett and Judy Watson.

The Plaza Gallery houses a collection of paintings by first-generation Central Desert Indigenous artists.

Art works and sculptures from the Centre’s collection will receive specialist conservation treatment during the next few months, with the first 20 works already in the hands of some of Australia’s leading conservators in both Brisbane and Sydney.  The larger art works, some over two metres in height, are undergoing treatment in Sydney due to their size.

Innovations such as the Plaza Gallery, a dedicated art gallery space which houses a museum quality collection of paintings by first-generation Central Desert Indigenous artists, including Clifford Possum Tjapaltjarri, have increased the profile of the collection.

The Plaza Gallery hosted world leaders who used the gallery as a private meeting space during the G20 World Leaders Summit in 2014, and in recent years, has proven a popular event space for First Nations organisations.

“The Plaza Gallery is a highly valued space, particularly for international conferences, whose delegates are keen to engage with and learn about Australia’s Indigenous history and culture,” said Kym Guesdon, BCEC’s general manager.