Tea drinking is an everyday tradition shared by many people across all walks of life. As a personal object, we often infuse the tea cup with meaning that goes beyond its functional form – we give our tea cups 'a second life'. It's valued because of what it means to us personally and kept in a special place to remind us of comfort, peace and shared moments.
Sharing stories and memories is at the heart of the Tea & Me project. Our record of them go to make up the story of our social history; they shape our lives, communities and understanding of the world.
We invite you to share these stories with us and to visit the Tea & Me display on the Queensland Terrace, level 2, State Library of Queensland in Brisbane. Tea & Me represents Queensland in this space through the tea cups in the cabinets and stories on the website. For more stories and memories about sharing tea in Queensland, go to the Tea & Me Facebook page.
The Queensland Library Foundation aims to support the State Library's mission of creatively engaging people with information, knowledge and community. One of the ways in which this is achieved is by delivering unique programming such as Tea & Me, which acknowledges the past and looks to the future.
Donations to Tea & Me are still being accepted. Stories and images can be added to the Tea & Me Facebook page. If you have a special tea cup that has a unique story and you would be willing to donate it, please contact us.
The Tea & Me collection will be held in the John Oxley Library at the State Library. Stories will continue to be added to this website and the John Oxley Library blog.
For more information about Tea & Me or to donate an item, please call 3840 7879 or contact us
Queensland Terrace is perhaps one of State Library's most unexpected spaces. It is a room of delightful surprise, adopting the miscreant logic of being both outdoors and a cabinet for treasures and memories.
The creation of Queensland Terrace as a truly civic room belonging to all Queenslanders, was considered of utmost importance by the architects. Brisbane's other 'room in the sky', Cloudland, was destroyed in 1982. Other public rooms have been few and far between. When Lady Roma Diamantina Bowen wished to host a ball in Old Government House, the trellised garden became the al fresco reception area. Like Cloudland in its day, Queensland Terrace addresses democratic functions through its adoption as a citizen's place of celebration and its romantic associations.
Cabinets designed specifically for tea cups and tea sets line the walls of Queensland Terrace. The Tea & Me teacups evoke the humble ritual of tea taking while simultaneously being reflected, multiplied, fractured and glorified in kaleidoscopic patterns over the glamorously mirrored ceiling. Queensland Terrace is open to the public during library opening hours (unless privately hired).