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New gallery and projections showcase Queensland art at refurbished Judith Wright Centre

A new gallery space and outdoor projections are showcasing the work of Queensland artists as part of a new creative space for the arts sector at the Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts (JWCoCA) in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley.

Photo by Louis LimThe Institute of Modern Art (IMA), a long-time tenant at the Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts (JWCoCA), is taking the lead in programming the new gallery and projections in a one-year pilot program commissioned by the Queensland Government.

The IMA Belltower program kicked off on 22 June with exciting work from two Brisbane-based artists: a solo exhibition by First Nations artist Mandy Quadrio in the new gallery space and projections by Sebastian Moody.

The IMA Belltower program will feature a mix of new and established artists presented in the gallery space and activating the venue at night with bold new work from Queensland artists.

The new corner gallery is the first space to open as a result of a JWCoCA redevelopment to address the arts sector’s need for creative spaces. The $3 million refurbishment, due to be completed in September, supports a new vision in developing local arts and cultural works.

The JWCoCA, home to 12 arts and creative companies, has been a vibrant cultural destination since its opening in 2001, presenting an ambitious and diverse program of exhibitions, shows and events, and as a home for a range of arts tenants.

Along with the new gallery space, the refurbished building will feature an updated facade and entry, an enhanced foyer layout with a small cafe, new fitout and finishes, and more spaces for tenants, artists and arts workers to meet and come together.

Photo by Louis LimThe IMA Belltower program is curated by Freja Carmichael, a Ngugi woman belonging to the Quandamooka People of Moreton Bay, who joined the IMA in 2018 as Visiting Curator. It will present some of the most exciting voices from around the state, and support the development of a number of new artworks by Queensland artists.

The JWCoCA refurbishment is being carried out through the Queensland Government’s Arts Infrastructure Investment Fund, which provides $17.5 million over four years (2017–18 to 2020–21) to revitalise state-owned assets to generate cultural and economic benefits.

The IMA Belltower program and the IMA is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland.

Header image: Mandy Quadrio, 'The Country Within', 2019, kelp, ochre, beeswax, string. Photo: Llewellyn Millhouse.