QAGOMA Foundation Christmas Celebration
Your Honour; Foundation President, Mr Tim Fairfax and fellow Committee Members; Chair of the Gallery Board of Trustees, Emeritus Professor Ian O’Connor and fellow Trustees; Director, Mr Chris Saines; distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen.
I at once acknowledge the traditional owners of these lands and extend respectful greetings to Elders and emerging leaders.
In what has been a remarkable year for us all, it is with great delight that we are able to gather together here tonight to mark Christmas and the end of the year… and, of course to celebrate the remarkable contributions of the Foundation and its members to our State, and to the Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art.
First of all, we must raise our glasses to the redoubtable Win Schubert, and indeed to all of the generous benefactors and donors whose generosity via the Foundation gives our State such a brilliant accent.
Win may no longer be with us, but her magnificent generosity still rings throughout this esteemed Gallery, and will for many generations.
Her bequest, the details of which were made public earlier this year, was an incredible act of support for the arts and cultural life in our State.
It reflected her faith – undoubtedly true – in the intrinsic power of the arts to inspire us, transform us and provide us moments of exquisite beauty.
And although the number of people through the Gallery doors has been affected this year, the innovative and creative ways in which the Gallery was able to welcome people “inside” but from afar has been commendable.
I know the Gallery is now roaring back to life – quite literally – with a pipeline of thought-provoking and visionary installations like ‘The Motorcycle: Design, Art, Desire’ exhibition we will all shortly tour.
At Government House we are equally eager to welcome people back in ever greater numbers – starting with the many thousands who will visit the popular Christmas Lights display starting Friday.
And with public tours resuming inside the House from early in the New Year, the tens of thousands of Queenslanders who visit can continue to marvel at the many significant artworks on display at Government House, courtesy of the support of QAGOMA and its Foundation.
Let me finish where I began, by reflecting on the incredible role this Foundation plays in the continued success of our Gallery.
Remarkably, some 94% of acquisitions last year were thanks to the Foundation, prompting a new category of supporters – Visionary supporters, who have donated substantially over the years.
I am grateful and awed by your support.
As Governor and Patron, and on behalf of all of us who come to the Gallery to engage with the works here, I thank you all.
Kaye and I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, which we look forward to with optimism.