Gallery’s global appeal a 10 on the Richter scale
The opening of the first major Australian exhibition of one of the world’s most influential and expensive contemporary artists is framing an already record year of success for Queensland’s Gallery of Modern Art.
Assembling the works of German artist Gerhard Richter from private and public collections, including the Tate Modern in London, is another major coup for GOMA fresh on the heels of its recent foray into movie culture with the Marvel showcase, which drew blockbuster crowds.
Mixing hands-on, interactive displays and serious artistic exhibitions has driven patronage and made the decade-old GOMA one of the most popular and cuttingedge galleries in the country.
More than 1.73 million people visited in the last financial year.
Marvel: Creating the Cinematic Universe broke all previous attendance records for a ticketed show, attracting 269,000 visitors from May 27 to September 3.
Gerhard Richter: The Life of Images, displaying 60 years of realist and abstract paintings, will show exclusively in Brisbane from tomorrow to February 4.
GOMA director Chris Saines said the gallery was focused on adding to its repertoire of highly interactive work and more serious displays.
“The gallery has become known for really experiential works where people can engage their senses while enjoying the exhibition,” he said.
“As well as the engaging displays we are prepared to take on more serious work, like Gerard Richter. I think it is that mix which is driving our success.”
Queensland College of Art student Danielle Milne, 36, said Brisbane was lucky to host such a major exhibition after being given a sneak peek of the works.
“This is the type of show Australia would be lucky to see in Sydney or Melbourne, so it is a big deal for Brisbane,’’ she said.
“Up until today I had only seen (Gerhard Richter’s) work in books but to see them up close was amazing.
“For the duration of the exhibition I will be coming back to see the paintings and I think I will notice something different each time.”
Mr Saines said increased funding from the Queensland government had helped the gallery to be more ambitious in its exhibitions.
Curator Geraldine Kirrihi Barlow gives Queensland College of Art student Danielle Milne a sneak preview of Gerhard Richter: The Life of Images