Media releases

View current and recent media releases from the State Library. For more information about any of these stories or about earlier releases, please contact Marketing and Communications on +61 7 3842 9847 or by email to


9 Jun 2015

Queensland public libraries embrace emerging technologies

Queensland public libraries embrace emerging technologies

Exciting new Queensland public library projects will soon launch in 15 councils throughout Queensland thanks to State Library's Technology Trendsetters 2015 grant round.

Grants totalling over $228,000 will enable councils to creatively incorporate emerging technologies and 21st Century online services in their public libraries.

State Librarian and CEO Janette Wright said the Technology Trendsetters grants aim to enhance communities' access to online information, encourage online engagement and develop digital literacy skills of library staff and the community.

"This year we received an overwhelming response of applications and are pleased to announce that every council was successfully awarded the funding amount requested," Ms Wright said.

"The diversity of creative project proposals demonstrates that libraries play an important role as 'Technology Trendsetters' and are used as community hubs for digital engagement, exploration and skill development.

"An example is Noosa Shire Council's innovative 'Robots for everyone' project which introduces cutting-edge robotics technology to the community through a series of learning and social programs based on a fully programmable NAO humanoid robot.

"Use of this robot in a library is a first for Australia and shows how libraries are places for communities to interact with and learn about new technologies."

Projects range from the creation of an 'e-space' for online group training in Maryborough (Fraser Coast Regional Council); electronics, robotics and coding sessions for children throughout Brisbane (Brisbane City Council); and implementation of modern scanning facilities in Gympie libraries to help form an online historic record of the Gympie region using the Historypin platform.

Technology Trendsetters is one of the four themes of The Next Horizon: Vision 2017 for Queensland public libraries, developed by the State Library of Queensland, the Queensland Public Libraries Association and the Local Government Association of Queensland.

VISION 2017 is the strategic roadmap for the future of public libraries in Queensland for 2013-2017.

For more information on VISION 2017 and upcoming projects in all 15 locations visit Public Libraries Connect.

The successful public libraries will start developing their projects from 30 June 2015.

Media enquiries:
Kirri-Lee Huggett, SLQ Communications
07 3840 9083 |

2 Jun 2015

State Library unveils model Expo 88 sculpture by international artist

State Library unveils model Expo 88 sculpture by international artist

State Library of Queensland today unveiled the model of a sculpture by international artist Jon Barlow Hudson, renowned for his Brisbane World Expo 88 artworks.

The model or maquette, is a sectional model of Barlow Hudson's artwork Paradigm, one of two sculptures originally created for Expo 88.

State Librarian Janette Wright said that it was a pleasure to welcome the Paradigm maquette to its new home at State Library (SLQ) in South Bank.

"State Library is committed to discovering, recording and sharing Queensland's history, and Expo 88 and Jon Barlow Hudson's sculptures from a significant part of that history," Ms Wright said.

"We are extremely grateful to Jon Barlow Hudson, and to the Museum of Brisbane for their generous five-year loan of this iconic piece."

The Paradigm maquette was originally created in 1988 and has never before been on public display.

The maquette was a gift to Museum of Brisbane from the artist and Peter Rasey, Director of the Expo 88 25th Anniversary People's Committee.

The original sculpture, Paradigm, was constructed in stainless steel and towered over the Expo 88 site at 30 metres high.

Based on the double helix of the DNA molecule, during Expo 88 Paradigm also housed 66 aeroplane landing lights that created a mesmerising night-time display.

Paradigm was the world’s first sculpture to be designed with the aid of a computer, and the world’s first to have a computerised lighting system installed.

The second Expo 88 work, Morning Star II, is currently installed in the Brisbane City Botanical Gardens.

In January 2014, Barlow Hudson also donated to State Library a series of papers, photographs, plans, correspondence, newspaper clippings, and reports relating to Paradigm and Morning Star II.

“The Paradigm maquette serves as a physical reminder of the legacy of Expo 88 in Queensland, complementing the original materials and papers now housed in SLQ’s John Oxley Library,” Ms Wright said.

“Thanks to a generous donation of $5,000 from Peter Rasey, these papers will be digitised and made available online. This means that the materials and the historical information contained within them will be easily accessible by all Queenslanders, not just those in the vicinity of Brisbane.”

Read more about Jon Barlow Hudson’s work on SLQ’s blogs at

Barlow Hudson has been making sculptures for public, private and corporate sites worldwide since 1976, with installations in 26 countries. Expo 88 was Barlow Hudson’s first international commission.

You can view an interactive map to find locations of Barlow Hudson’s sculptures around the world at Brisbane is the only Australian city to host Barlow Hudson’s artwork.

Media enquiries:
Shahedah Sabdia, SLQ Communications
07 3842 9084 |

29 May 2015

State Library honours Queensland history with awards

State Library honours Queensland history with awards

State Library of Queensland announced the recipients of four history awards at its annual Queensland Memory Awards Ceremony last night.

State Librarian Janette Wright said the Queensland Memory Awards were celebrated each year to acknowledge excellence in research and the creation of new knowledge about Queensland's history.

"Queensland's past is rich with untold stories waiting to be explored and shared with our community," Ms Wright said.

"The extensive documentary heritage house in State Library's collections provides many exciting opportunities for researchers to delve into Queensland history and share their discoveries in new, unique and innovative ways," she said.

The 2015 award recipients are:

  • John Oxley Library Fellowship: Madonna Grehan (12 months residency in the John Oxley Library)
  • Queensland Business Leaders Hall of Fame Fellowship: Julie Hornibrook (6 months residency in the John Oxley Library)
  • John Oxley Library Award (joint winner): Trisha Fielding
  • John Oxley Library Award (joint winner): Trevor Newman
  • John Oxley Library Community History Award: Ration Shed Museum, Cherbourg

Minister for Science and Innovation Leeanne Enoch said State Library of Queensland, through the John Oxley Library, had a key responsibility as the custodian of Queensland's memory.

"These awards honour the many individuals across our commitments who go to extraordinary lengths to research and record our state's rich, fascinating and diverse history," she said.

"These individuals often receive little recognition for their effort – effort which can make an invaluable contribution to our understanding and appreciation of ourselves and each other, and the world in which we live."

Supported by the Queensland Library Foundation, the $20,000 John Oxley Library Fellowship will enable Madonna Grehan to embark on her research project, Something tangible to show our gratitude: a history of Queensland's Centaur Memorial Fund for Nurses, using the John Oxley Library collections.

A certified nurse herself, Madonna's project explores Queensland's largest fundraising campaign of the 20th century, which was dedicated to honouring the nurses from Australian Army Nursing Services who lost their lives in the 1943 Centaur maritime disaster.

Granddaughter of Queensland building industry pioneer, Sir Manuel Hornibrook, Julie Hornibrook is the recipient of the $15,000 Queensland Business Leaders Hall of Fame Fellowship.

Julie's project brings together original materials from the John Oxley Library and her personal family collection of photographs, mementos and letters to explore the legacy of her grandfather in Sir Manuel Hornibrook: Father of the Australian Building Industry.

The Fellowship is an initiative of the Queensland Business Leaders Hall of Fame, a partnership between State Library of Queensland, Queensland Library Foundation and QUT Business School.

This year, the John Oxley Library Award was presented to two individuals who have worked tirelessly to share their local history with the broader community through online engagement.

The 2015 award was presented to Trisha Fielding from Townsville for her work as historian and blogger of North Queensland History (; and to Trevor Newman from Brisbane for his work on recording the history, stories and many faces of Brisbane in his blog Your Brisbane Past and Present (

The John Oxley Library Community History Award, also supported by the Queensland Library Foundation, this year went to the Ration Shed Museum in Cherbourg.

The Ration Shed Museum was acknowledged for their significant work in connecting the community to their local history, as well as sharing stories with the broader Queensland community online.

The Museum's exhibitions and programs celebrate many unknown aspects of contemporary, local Aboriginal culture and ensure important stories are recorded for posterity. In particular the unique exhibition Boys from Barambah which pays tribute to 47 Barambah men who proudly served in the First World War.

All Queensland Memory Awards recipients were celebrated with a formal awards ceremony at State Library of Queensland last night.

The 2015 Fellows will soon begin work on their projects and will share outcomes with State Library's online community throughout their time as Fellows.

For more information on the Awards see Queensland Memory Awards.

Interview opportunities:

2015 John Oxley Library Fellowship
Madonna GrehanSomething tangible to show our gratitude: a history of Queensland's Centaur Memorial Fund for Nurses

2015 Queensland Business Leaders Hall of Fame Fellowship
Julie HornibrookSir Manuel Hornibrook: Father of the Australian Building Industry

2015 John Oxley Library Award
Trisha FieldingNorth Queensland History
Trevor NewmanYour Brisbane Past and Present

2015 John Oxley Library Community History Award
Sandra Morgan, Chairperson, Ration Shed Museum

High resolution images available upon request

Media enquiries:
Shahedah Sabdia, SLQ Communications
07 3842 9084 |

26 May 2015

State Library offers young writers chance to win $2,000

Got a story to tell? State Library offers young writers chance to win $2,000

Aspiring young writers are invited to enter State Library's Young Writers Award, for a chance to win great prizes and kick start their literary career.

Now in it's twentieth year, this annual short story competition which has traditionally been open to Queenslanders aged 18-25, is this year introducing a new age category for 15-17 year olds.

State Librarian Janette Wright said the Young Writers Award demonstrated State Library's commitment to cultivate the talents and careers of emerging young writers in Queensland.

"The competition is a great opportunity for budding wordsmiths to gain invaluable exposure to the publishing industry, and share in a selection of great prizes and professional opportunities," Ms Wright said.

"We've lowered the minimum entrant age because we want to provide the support, encouragement and industry exposure that talented teenage writers need to confidently pursue a literary career.

"For 20 years, the Award for a short piece of writing has helped kick-start the literary careers of many prominent Queensland authors, including Christopher Currie (The Ottoman Motel), Alasdair Duncan (Sushi Central), Chris Somerville (We Are Not The Same Anymore), Benjamin Law (The Family Law) and Tara June Winch (Swallow the Air).

"I encourage all 15 to 25 year old Queenslanders to channel their creativity and determination, and share the stories that are meaningful to them," she said.

Since last year's competition, 2014 winner Michael Day has had two memoir short stories published in print magazines, and begun work on a novella-length project based on some of the same themes as Zen Master, his Young Writers Award entry.

Michael said the main benefits of winning the award were getting to meet so many other young writers, and gaining confidence to pursue what he loves.

"I now know what I like writing about and feel a little more comfortable calling myself a writer," Michael said.

The winner of the 18-25 year old category will receive $2,000 prize money, along with a 12 month membership to the Queensland Writers Centre and the Australian Writer's Marketplace online, a Brisbane Writers Festival pack and admission to a Queensland Writers Centre industry seminar.

The winner of the 15-17 year old category will receive an Apple iPad air 2, a $100 iTunes gift voucher, a 12 month membership to the Queensland Writers Centre and admission to a Story Lab holiday workshop at State Library of Queensland.

Entries close at 5pm on Friday 17 July 2015. For competition guidelines, writing tips and to read last year's winning stories see SLQ's Young Writers Award.

The Young Writers Award is funded by State Library of Queensland and supported by Queensland Writers Centre, Brisbane Writers Festival and Australian Writer's Marketplace.

Media enquiries:
Stephanie Birch, SLQ Communications
07 3840 7748 |

22 Apr 2015

Siganto Foundation Artists' Books Fellows announced by State Library of Queensland

Siganto Foundation Artists' Books Fellows announced by State Library of Queensland

Two artists have been awarded Siganto Foundation Artists' Books Fellowships to create new works for State Library's nationally significant collection of artists' books.

Julie Barratt and Clyde McGill have been awarded $9,000 each to spend six months creating new works.

Printmaker Julie Barratt has concentrated on artists' books construction for the last few years. She is interested in tactility and texture and employs embossing, stitching, and collograph printing in her books.

Her project Blair Athol Re-cut is a pictorial and oral history project to be realised in the form of a sculptural artist's book.

Ms Barratt said, "The book will speak about the displacement of an entire township to make way for an open-cut coal mine.

"As a child living on the nearby Blair Athol Station, this relocation had a direct impact on my childhood, my sense of place, and my sense of community as friends and family were relocated to neighbouring town Clermont."

Ms Barratt said her book would be made up of pages inlaid with historical road maps from SLQ's John Oxley Library which show Blair Athol as a town.

"The etched maps will be overlaid with images and text," she said.

SLQ currently holds two of Julie Barratt's works, 'Collateral Damage' and 'A place called touch'.

Clyde McGill is an artist working across a wide range of artistic practices and areas of interest including: performance, drawing, artists' books, video and still photography, printmaking, and collaborative art.

His project is entitled 'Looking for Queensland's boundaries: the poetry and magic of ephemeral evidence'. In this work McGill will address the ephemeral in the collections, from bus tickets to maps as well as exploring the counterpoint of permanency of ephemera within library collections.

Mr McGill said he was interested in the changing elements that reflect the flux and context of place in Queensland. 

SLQ holds four of McGill's artists' books, 'A remnant of a journey, he said, to the space between us/to Berlin', 'Atlas strongman', 'Inside/Outside (ii)', and 'Souvenirs'.

State Library has just opened a new round of Siganto Artists' Books Fellowships closing on 1 June. Two Fellowships are available – the Creative Fellowship is open to artists' books makers to create a new work based on State Library's collections and the Research Fellowship is open to scholars and researchers interested in generating new knowledge about State Library's nationally significant artists' books collections.

For more information about the Fellowships or how to apply, see Awards and competitions.

Media enquiries:
Cathy Stacey, SLQ Communications
07 3842 9346 |

9 Apr 2015

New design installation announced for State Library

New design installation announced for State Library

State Library of Queensland is delighted to announce a team from global design and consulting firm Woods Bagot will deliver the inaugural APDL Connect Project installation.

The APDL Connect Project, a new initiative of State Library's Asia Pacific Design Library (APDL), gives designers from the Asia Pacific region an opportunity to develop and display their work in the APDL Design Lounge. In doing so, the project aims to document a design project from concept to completion, providing audiences access to an inspiring exemplar of design process.

State Librarian Janette Wright said she was impressed by the quality of proposals State Library received in the project's first year.

"We received many high calibre proposals from designers across the Asia Pacific region, and across a broad range of design disciplines; although one proposal in particular stood out as intriguing and inspiring, demonstrating a clear understanding of and engagement with the theme," Ms Wright said.

"The Woods Bagot proposal, which explores the idea of cultural DNA, is an interactive design that will build over time, engaging the public and continuously evolving."

The winning proposal was developed by Beijing-based designers Ray Yuen, Andrew Brett and Tak Lee, and will be project managed by Brisbane-based designer Laura Fenwick, in response to a regional workshop they held in the Woods Beijing and Brisbane offices, exploring the idea of cultural influences on design.

Laura Fenwick said the designers were thrilled to have the opportunity to exhibit within the Asia Pacific Design Library, and to encourage and stimulate discussion on design in the Asia Pacific region.

"As the installation evolves over time, we hope it will provide a visual representation of the diversity of cultural backgrounds and experiences of both designers and visitors who engage with the project," Ms Fenwick said.

The installation is expected to be installed in State Library's Design Lounge in June, and will be on display until May 2016. Queenslanders are encouraged to visit the Lounge and contribute to the evolution of this artwork.

For more information about State Library and APDL, visit

Media enquiries:
Stephanie Birch, SLQ Communications
07 3840 7784 |

Available for interview:

Natalie Wright
Asia Pacific Design Library Manager
State Library of Queensland

Laura Fenwick
Woods Bagot

2 Apr 2015

First World War exhibition tells Queensland's story

First World War exhibition tells Queensland's story

State Library of Queensland opens its major exhibition Distant Lines: Queensland voices of the First World War – this Saturday 4 April, running until 15 November.

Distant Lines connects us with the intimate and untold stories of Queenslanders as we commemorate 100 years since Australia's involvement in the First World War.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said astonishing stories of bravery, heartache and patriotism are told through personal letters, diaries, photographs, belongings and digital stories which offer the opportunity for interaction, debate and reflection on this tumultuous time in history.

"State Library of Queensland's exhibition, Distant Lines: Queensland voices of the First World War, is a part of a $49.3 million investment by the government in Anzac Centenary commemoration events and projects during 2014-15," Ms Palaszczuk said.

"We can all play a role in commemorating Queensland's contribution to the First World War, and going to this exhibition is the perfect way to get involved and honour the memory of Queensland servicemen and women."

State Librarian and CEO Janette Wright said the exhibition explored the home front and war front experiences of the war – before, during and after.

"The exhibition will showcase many of State Library's precious First World War collections that have never been seen by the public before," Ms Wright said.

Visitors to Distant Lines will be immersed in the daily reality of war by walking through a First World War trench experience in SLQ Gallery and discover personal war front experiences through the lives of 25 Queenslanders who served.

Philip Bacon Heritage Gallery tells the First World War home front stories from recruitment and conscription campaigning to the darker side of patriotism: racism, censorship and propaganda with State Library's extensive collection of posters, photographs, records, letters and event programmes on show.

Displays throughout the library take you on a journey through Queensland's history to commemorate 100 years since the Gallipoli landing; and the age-old debate 'for or against war' is discussed in relation to Australia's two conscription referenda (1916 and 1917).

The community is invited to celebrate the opening of Distant Lines on Saturday 11 April with a special day of reflection packed with free music events, workshops and activities, talks, curator's tours, and exclusive performances by Queensland Symphony Orchestra.

The highlight of the exhibition opening event will be a free performance by Queensland Symphony Orchestra in response to the life stories of Queensland soldiers, nurses, and doctors whose stories are told in SLQ Gallery.

The exhibition aims to commemorate our history, expand our understanding of the First World War and help current and future generations appreciate our state's experience of the war and the Anzac legacy.

Distant Lines, as part of State Library's Q ANZAC 100: Memories for a New Generation program, is proudly supported by the Queensland Government.

For full program details visit Distant Lines or follow the conversation online with @slqld #distantlines #qanzac100 and #ww1.

Media enquiries
Cinnamon Watson Publicity
0432 219 643 |

14 Mar 2015

State Library recognises four million Australians living with disability

State Library recognises four million Australians living with disability

State Library of Queensland invites the community to come ‘ALLtogether’ on Sunday 22 March for a free festival to honour people with disability.

State Librarian Janette Wright said the ALLtogether celebration day was an important event in State Library’s calendar, as it let people with disability know their contributions to Queensland were recognised and valued.

“State Library is a welcoming place for all Queenslanders. Each year, we take this special day to acknowledge the important contributions people with disability make every day, to celebrate their diverse stories, and acknowledge how they enrich our community.”

Hosted in partnership with UnitingCare Community and sponsored by Multicap, ALLtogether will bring people with disability, support organisations and the wider community together to promote understanding of and respect for the four million Australians that live with disability.

UnitingCare Community’s Director of Disability Services Lorna Sullivan said ALLtogether is one of many events worldwide that aim to raise community awareness, improve attitudes, and break down the barriers faced by people with disability.

“UnitingCare Community is proud to continue co-hosting ALLtogether, as it strengthens our commitment to engaging people with disabilities, their families and friends, and helping them to lead good lives,” she said.

At ALLtogether in March, visitors can experience an even wider range of exciting performances and entertainment than in previous years.

There will be on-stage entertainment throughout the day, including performers with disabilities such as The Transformers Choir, Southside Singers and Ambition Road.

Numerous organisations and community groups will also host art and craft stalls and information stands, including Access Arts, Life Without Barriers, and CPL – Choice, Passion Life (Cerebral Palsy League).

Supporting partner Brisbane City Council will be providing event activities for the day including mobile and pop-up libraries, Council bus tours, Tai Chi, and wheelchair skills sessions.

ALLtogether will be held at State Library in South Bank’s Cultural Precinct. SLQ offers disability parking, access and facilities.

A free barbeque lunch will be served at 12.30pm. All activities are free, and everyone is welcome.

ALLtogether is ordinarily held at the end of each year to coincide with International Day of People with Disability on 3 December. Last year’s event was unfortunately postponed until March 2015 due to unforeseen circumstances.

When: Sunday 22 March 2015, 10am–4pm

Where: State Library of Queensland, Cultural Precinct, Stanley Place, South Bank

See the full program at or contact Lyn Thompson on 07 3842 9058 for more information.

Media enquiries:
Shahedah Sabdia, SLQ Communications
07 3842 9084 |

3 Mar 2015

Learn new skills online 24/7 through your local library

Learn new skills online 24/7 through your local library

Ever wanted to learn how to design a website or use Photoshop? Perhaps you need to improve your Excel capabilities or develop your business skills?

Queensland residents now have free access to more than 3,000 top-quality courses and 136,000 video tutorials for learning the latest commercial software, creative and business skills, a web based video service. is available through your SLQ or Queensland public library membership.

"Connecting people with resources to support their life-long learning is one of the benefits State Library of Queensland seeks to provide to Queenslanders," said Janette Wright, State Librarian.

“ is a valuable addition to the existing courses and resources that public libraries offer onsite and online, allowing public libraries to expand what we offer to meet the changing needs of Queensland communities.

“We are excited to provide library members with access to online classes from industry professionals, for free and on their own schedules.”

Library members of SLQ and over 300 public libraries and Indigenous Knowledge Centres now have 24/7 unlimited online access to thousands of online courses covering business management, leadership, marketing, multimedia, design, web development and more. Members can also learn job search skills such as resume writing and interviewing.

Courses and tutorials can be accessed from any compatible desktop or portable device via members’ public library online catalogue.

Unlimited access to courses on hundreds of relevant topics makes a valuable addition to the 21st century library.

For more information visitSLQ onlineor your localpublic librarywebsite and login using your current library membership.

Media enquiries:
Malia Naupoto, SLQ Communications
07 3842 9847 |

13 Feb 2015

Architects share ideas at State Library

Architects share ideas at State Library

Hear from internationally renowned architects at State Library of Queensland (SLQ) with the return of the annual UQ Architecture lecture series next month.

A partnership between SLQ’s Asia Pacific Design Library and The University of Queensland’s School of Architecture, this free, weekly talk series brings together forward-thinking architects from across Queensland, Australia and the globe to critically explore architectural ideas and issues.

State Librarian Janette Wright said the 2015 series intended to spark discussion and debate around 21st century architectural challenges, continuing State Library’s past work in this space.

“Our goal is to encourage our audience to expand their understanding of the role of architecture in society and how it affects the well-being of our communities,” Ms Wright said.

“The design of the built environment has significant implications for everyday life.”

“As we move to a more globally connected world and encounter complex new questions, the architectural profession is being challenged to adapt and to embrace the responsibility of designing a better world,” she said.

The Asia Pacific Design Library (APDL) is dedicated to promoting the role of architecture and design to the broader society and, alongside UQ, to bringing research into the design studio to generate new knowledge.

Series curator, John de Manincor, Senior Lecturer at UQ said, “The series is about sharing ideas with anyone interested in the design of the spaces they inhabit. Working with APDL is a fabulous opportunity for UQ Architecture to engage with the wider community, as well as the profession.”

Andrew Burges from New South Wales-based firm Andrew Burges Architects (ABA) will launch the series on the evening of Tuesday 10 March at 6.30pm, with networking and refreshments from 6pm.

The series runs for eight consecutive weeks through March and April (excluding Easter, Tuesday 7 April), with architects from Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, London, Hong Kong and Shanghai.

Visit for the full list of sessions and speakers, alongside a range of content including video recordings, which will be made available after each event.

Architecture professionals attending the events will be eligible for two formal continuing professional development points (CPD) with the Australian Institute of Architects.

DateTuesdays, 10 Mar – 5 May (excl. 7 Apr), 6pm for 6.30pm start
VenuePart 1 – The Edge Auditorium
Part 2 – Auditorium 1, State Library of Queensland
EntryFree, bookings

Media enquiries:
Shahedah Sabdia, SLQ Communications
07 3842 9084 |

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For more information about any of these stories or about earlier releases, please contact Marketing and Communications on +61 7 3842 9847 or by email to

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