Online exhibition

Twenty is a photography exhibition reflecting on the last 20 years in Queensland. Documentary photography plays a vital role in capturing the events and experiences that shape our lives.

Twenty reveals a story of a changing Queensland—one that still has echoes of its past but is also embracing a more diverse and tolerant future. Looking back, the year 2000 seems a simpler time. Over the last two decades, society has undergone seismic shifts. Immerse yourself in this rich and complex history. 

Explore Twenty

Explore the online photography exhibition today.



Wild weather

Queensland is no stranger to extreme weather. The last 20 years have seen some of the worst events to affect the state.




The Queensland community spirit is palpable in clean-up efforts following natural disasters, in protests around human rights and environmental concerns.



Art and celebration

While iconic festivals such as Livid (1989–2003) might have fallen away, the strength of the arts and cultural scene continues to flourish.




While Queensland is known for its humble timber-and-tin vernacular, the last two decades have seen dramatic changes.



Beyond Brisbane

 Queensland’s geographical features are hugely divergent—from deserts to rainforests, from coral reefs to mountain ranges.



Working life

Unlike most Australian states, more than half of the Queensland population lives outside the greater metropolitan area of Brisbane.



Politics and people power

Generations of Queenslanders have fought hard to win many of the civil, social and human rights we enjoy today.



The 56 photographers featured in Twenty represent the incredible diversity of Queensland’s documentary photography community. Some are well-known, some are emerging, some have been practising their craft for years relatively unknown. Some studied photography, some are self-taught. They are all dedicated to documenting Queensland and their work has allowed State Library to develop an astonishing visual archive of our state in the contemporary era.

Michael Aird
David Allen 
Anthony Anderton
Patricia Baillie
Stephen Booth
Hamish Cairns
Brian Cassey
Darren Clark
Suzanna Clarke
Jacqueline Curley
Rodney Dekker
Heidi Den Ronden
Jo-Anne Driessens
Justin Edwards
Leif Ekstrom 
Liss Fenwick
Peter Fischmann
Amanda Gearing

Juno Gemes
Craig Golding
John Gollings
Troy Hansen
Josie Huang 
Kelly Hussey-Smith and Alan Hill
John Immig
Reina Irmer
Daryl Jones
Cassandra Kirk
Marko Laine 
Cameron Laird
Madeleine Marx-Bentley
Dominique Normand
Glen O’Malley
Chris Osborne
Renee Eloise Raymond
Mick Richards

Hannah Roche
Troy Rodgers
Brian Rogers
Dean Saffron
Jeremy Santolin
Cathy Schusler
Sarah Scragg
Arthur Liberty Seekee
Clare Sheldon
Doug Spowart and Victoria Cooper
Reuben Stafford
Brodie Standen
Jason Starr
Richard Stringer
Garry Taylor
Shehab Uddin
Alf Wilson
Marc Wright


Behind the Lens: Anna Thurgood

Step behind the lens with exhibition curator Anna Thurgood as she gives an overview of Twenty. This is the first in a series of talks. Throughout July, Anna will interview six photographers featured in Twenty.


Behind the Lens: Interview with Brian Cassey

Brian Cassey is a freelance photojournalist and documentary photographer based in Cairns who has covered some of the biggest events in the Asia Pacific region in the last 20 years. 


The Concerned Photographer, Hamish Cairns 2013

Richard Stringer architectural photographer

As it happened: Kerry O'Brien
Hear from Gold Walkley award-winning journalist Kerry O’Brien as he looks at State Library’s astonishing visual archive of Queensland as part of Twenty: two decades of Queensland photography online exhibition.


Benjamin and Tammy Law

Author Benjamin and photographer Tammy explore photographs from the exhibition, sharing their reflections and observations of Queensland over the last 20 years.

Working dog ready for moving to the next camp at Ilfracombe Queensland 2013

Join Anna Thurgood, Twenty exhibition curator, as she chats to the extraordinary photographers who have captured pivotal moments in Queensland's history and those that simply express our everyday life.

Child playing with older lady

Join us online for fun kids activities inspired by Twenty – State Library's new online photographic exhibition.   

Library shop

Festival Hall

Loved the photos?

Shop our print on demand poster range from Twenty.

Brisbane in Photos cover by Larissa Dening

Dening, Larissa

Brisbane is all grown up now - what once was a big country town has become a laidback yet vibrant city.

Shooting The Picture cover

Young, Sally

Shooting The Picture is the story of Australian press photography from 1888 to today.

From the blog

Audience at the Pig City Concert Brisbane July 2007

19 October 2017

On July 14, 2007, Pig City: Brisbane's Historic Soundtrack concert was held at University of Queensland's St Lucia campus. Part of the Queensland Music Festival, the concert was inspired by Andrew Stafford's book Pig City: from the Saints to Savage Garden.

4 November 2015

On February 16, 2003, one of Brisbane's largest mass protests took place when an estimated 100,000 people rallied against a military invasion of Iraq, though police more conservatively assessed only half that number turned out.

31 May 2017

On June 4, 2000, between 50,000 to 70,000 people joined a rally in Brisbane's CBD to show support for reconciliation with the People's Walk for Reconciliation.

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