Stories behind the billboard Gallery Walk

Discover the stories behind the ten historical images from our rich photographic collection featured on the Gallery Walk billboard located outside State Library.

From the designer

"Brisbane’s famous Story Bridge turns 80 this year so it felt like the ideal place to start this quaint and whimsical interpretation of historic Queensland. The sequence of images leads you on an uplifting journey bursting with stories to be shared.

The selected images work harmoniously together and adhere to a distinct visual style with a strong directional flow while maintaining balance and contrast. The final playful image of the boys doing leapfrog invites you to jump into State Library’s galleries and immerse yourself in the rare and fascinating collection items on display.

The billboard is inspired by State Library of Queensland’s vast collections which are showcased in our onsite and online galleries. These items are layered with history and memories that we can all connect with; sparking a yearning for more knowledge and adventure."

Toni Hendersen

Featured images

Lee Celledoni dancing the Jitterbug, 1947

The Jitterbug was an energetic ballroom dance that began in the United States. The dance was introduced to Queensland by visiting US armed forces during World War II and was often seen in venues through the 1940s. In this photograph Lee Celledoni was awarded 'best woman jitterbug' at a dance in 1947.

Construction of the Story Bridge, Brisbane, 1938

Work to construct the Story Bridge began in 1935, with the cantilever bridge connecting Kangaroo Point and Fortitude Valley opened to traffic in July 1940. The bridge was designed by John Bradfield, who also worked on the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The length of bridge including the approaches is 1375 m. More than 95% of the steel was manufactured in Australia and the bridge was constructed by Evans, Deakin-Hornibrook Construction Co. Pty Ltd.

Horse doing tricks with a young boy on its back

Horses have played several roles in Queensland life, as a mode of transport, household pets and within the racing industry. This image depicts an unusual scene of a young boy on the back of a horse stepping onto a wooden structure.

William Sneyd pictured with his Roliflex camera

William Joseph George Sneyd was born in Cairns 1910 and attended Ipswich Grammar School from 1915 to 1918. After a range of jobs, he became the chief photographer of the Brisbane Telegraph from 1934 to 1966. Sneyd also served as a Pilot Officer and Flying Officer in the RAAF during World War II.

Two boys playing leapfrog, 1910-1920

Leapfrog is a popular game in which players take turns in leaping over another player bent over from the waist. In this image from the early twentieth century, two boys are playing the game in a field.

Portrait of a woman and her dog, 1900-1910

Dogs frequently feature in State Library’s photographic collections. Highlighting the role dogs often play as companions and family members, these photographs show the fun dogs provide in our lives.

Murray Island man plaiting coconut leaves, 1958

The Torres Strait is a distinct and unique part of Queensland, with a deep connection its culture and traditions. Torres Strait Islanders have a distinct culture which varies slightly within each island or community. This photograph was taken by Wilhelm Lorenz Rechnitz, an Anglican priest who in 1940 was deported to Australia from Germany. Rechnitz worked as a priest in the Diocese of Carpentaria, which included the Torres Strait, until 1973.

Girl sitting in a crate of Queensland pineapples, 1924

This photograph of a young girl sitting in a crate of pineapples was used as a Queensland fruit promotion at the British Empire Exhibition at Wembley, London, in 1924. The Exhibition’s aim was to "to stimulate trade, strengthen bonds that bind mother Country to her Sister States and Daughters, to bring into closer contact the one with each other, to enable all who owe allegiance to the British flag to meet on common ground and learn to know each other."

1st Reinforcements Queensland to Egypt, 1918

Featuring the 1st Reinforcements Queensland to Egypt, this group photographs features several Aboriginal soldiers, including Willie Allen, Glen Combarngo, Herbert Roberts, Patrick Brady, John Lewis, Harry Roberts, and Alexander Stanley. Through its research State Library has identified almost 300 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men that enlisted during the First World War.

Amateur actor George Lauri, Brisbane, 1916

...Or is it? This photograph came into our collection a number of years ago with the subject described as George Lauri, amateur actor playing the character Anthony Tweedlepunch in a Brisbane Amateur Operatic Society (BAOS) performance of Florodora. However, through some chance research by one of our Librarians, we have discovered that George Lauri, professional actor and comedian, died tragically in 1909. He did perform Anthony Tweedlepunch in Florodora – just not in 1916 and not with the BAOS! Discover more about this mystery.

Current exhibitions


Twenty is an online photography exhibition reflecting on the last 20 years in Queensland.

80 Hz: Sound Lab 2.0

Experience pictures through sound. Images from State Library’s collection come to life in a new way, as they are digitally translated into musical compositions using metadata.

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Take a  journey into young artist's worlds, to see how they view themselves, their lives, their rights and their futures.

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