State Library of Queensland
Exterior of State Library
LocationSouth Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
TypeState Library[note 1]
Established1896; 128 years ago (1896)
Other information
Websitewww.slq.qld.gov.au
Building details
Map
Former namesThe Brisbane Public Library The Public Library of Queensland
Alternative namesSLQ
General information
TypePublic Building
AddressCultural Precinct, Stanley Place, South Bank, South Brisbane, Queensland
Construction started2004
Completed2006
Inaugurated25 November 2006
Technical details
Floor count5
Floor area28000m2
Design and construction
Architecture firmDonovan Hill, Peddle Thorp
Awards and prizesRAIA Sir Zelman Cowen Award for Public Architecture, 2007 RAIA Emil Sodersten Award for Interior Architecture, 2007

The State Library of Queensland is the main reference and research library provided to the people of the State of Queensland, Australia, by the state government. The Library is governed by the Library Board of Queensland, which draws its powers from the Libraries Act 1988. [1][2] It contains a significant portion of Queensland's documentary heritage, major reference and research collections, and is an advocate of and partner with public libraries across Queensland. The Library is at Kurilpa Point, within the Queensland Cultural Centre on the Brisbane River at South Bank.

History

The Brisbane Public Library was established by the government of the Colony of Queensland in 1896, and was renamed the Public Library of Queensland in 1898.[3] The library was opened to the public in 1902.[3]

In 1934, the Oxley Memorial Library (now the John Oxley Library),[4] named for the explorer John Oxley, opened as a centre for research and study relating specifically to Queensland. The Libraries Act of 1943 established the Library Board of Queensland to manage the Public Library of Queensland; three years later, under the terms of The Oxley Memorial Library of Queensland Act,[5] it took over management of the Oxley Memorial Library as well.

The old State Library with extension, built in the late 1950s
Vicki McDonald in 2023

In March 1947, James L. Stapleton was appointed Queensland's first State Librarian.[6][7] Stapleton advocated for a new building for the library and that library services should be free to the public.[8] He remains the longest-serving CEO (1947–1970),[9] and has been followed by five others: Sydney Lawrence (Lawrie) Ryan 1970–1988, Des Stephens 1988–2001, Lea Giles-Peters (the first woman to be appointed to the position),[10] 2001–2011, Janette Wright, 2012–2015 and from 2016, Vicki McDonald OA.[3]

In 1971, the "Public Library" became the "State Library". The following year, the Public Library Service was established to liaise with Queensland local authorities regarding their public libraries; a subsidy for employing qualified staff in public libraries was also established. A few years later the Country Lending Service was established to provide book exchange and other services to public libraries in Queensland's smaller local government areas. Under the new name of Rural Libraries Queensland, the service is still going strong today, administered by the State Library's Public and Indigenous Library Services program.[citation needed]

In 2003, the State Library began a new mission of establishing Indigenous Knowledge Centres (IKCs) in the Cape York and Torres Strait areas. There is now a network of 22 IKCs in remote and regional communities: across Cape York, the islands of the Torres Strait, Central Queensland and at Cherbourg in South East Queensland.[11]

The State Library's current strategic vision is to enrich the lives of Queenslanders through creatively engaging people with information, knowledge and community.[12]

In early 2011, the library donated 50,000 pictures to Wikimedia Commons.[13]

Collection and services

The State Library holds general collections, including books, journals and magazines, newspapers, audio-visual items, family history, maps, music, ephemera, Internet and electronic resources. There are research collections and services – including the John Oxley Library and the Australian Library of Art.[14]

State Library's collection holds 7 significant collections, recognised for their importance by UNESCO's Australian Memory of the World Register:[15]

State Library holds a number of significant collections of material documenting Queensland history;[30]

Services

Exhibitions

The library has hosted a number of prominent exhibitions, including:

Tours

Free guided tours of the building are available.[49] In 2010, a total of 3730 school students participated in a tour.[50]

Rural Libraries Queensland

Rural Libraries Queensland (formerly the Country Library Service) is a collaboration between the State Library of Queensland and approximately 30 of the local government councils to provide library libraries to rural communities.[51]

National edeposit (NED)

As a member library of National and State Libraries Australia, the organisation collaborated on the creation of the National edeposit (NED) system, which enables publishers from all over Australia to upload electronic publications as per the 2016 amendment to the Copyright Act 1968 and other regional legislation relating to legal deposit,[52] and makes these publications publicly accessible online (depending on access conditions) from anywhere via Trove.[53]

Architecture

Northern end of the State Library of Queensland
Interior of the State Library

The Brisbane Public Library moved into the Old State Library Building in William Street, Brisbane in 1899. This building had formerly been occupied by the Queensland Museum.

The Library originally shared accommodation in the building with an art gallery. In the late 1950s, an extension, with a distinctive tiled mural by Lindsay Edward on the exterior, was built onto the building to provide more space. The mural was the winning design in a national competition held in 1958.

In 1988, the year of Brisbane's World Expo 88, the State Library of Queensland moved to a new home within the Queensland Cultural Centre at South Bank, near the Queensland Museum and the original Queensland Art Gallery,[3] on the site of the former St Helen's Methodist Hospital, South Brisbane.[54][55] This new building, a C-shaped edifice of straight-faced concrete and glass[56] built around a mature Poinciana tree overlooking the Brisbane River, was the work of architectural firm, Robin Gibson and Partners,[57] and marked the completion of Gibson's ambitious Queensland Cultural Centre project.[58]

In 2004, work began on the Millennium Library Project - a major redevelopment of the existing State Library building.[59] After three years of extensive redevelopment, the South Bank building officially re-opened on 25 November 2006 as "a new cultural and knowledge destination" and a fitting showcase for the collections.

This major redevelopment was the work of Brisbane-based architecture firms Donovan Hill and Peddle Thorp. Their work earned them several awards - the prestigious RAIA Sir Zelman Cowen Award for Public Architecture, 2007 (award for best public building in Australia),[60] the RAIA Emil Sodersten Award for Interior Architecture, 2007,[61] the RAIA Queensland Architecture Award for Brisbane Building of the Year 2007, the RAIA FDG Stanley Award for Public Buildings Architecture 2007, and the AIB Queensland Award for Project of the Year + Sustainability Commendation, 2007.[62][63]

The Donovan Hill/Peddle Thorp additions transformed the State Library building, reconfiguring the entrance, adding another level and doubling its size with an additional 12,000 sqm of new space.[64][65][66] Although the elements of the original Gibson scheme were preserved in the renovation, the building was deemed too altered to be included in the 2015 State Heritage Listing of the Cultural Centre.[64][67]

The State Library building has since been described as an “open, generous knowledge place,”[56] and one of Australia's "most cherished public living rooms".[68]

The building overlooks Stanley Place between the Queensland Art Gallery and the Queensland Gallery of Modern Art.

Governance

The State Library of Queensland is governed by the Library Board of Queensland, which draws its powers from the Libraries Act 1988.[2][1] The Library comprises the following program units:

Regional Access and Public Libraries

Engagement and Partnerships

Corporate Services

Office of the State Librarian

Queensland Business Leaders Hall of Fame

In 2009 State Library of Queensland, the Queensland Library Foundation and QUT Business School at Queensland University of Technology collaborated to establish the Queensland Business Leaders Hall of Fame initiative.[69] The QBLHOF recognises outstanding contributions made by organisations, companies and individuals to develop the Queensland economy and society, both contemporary and historical. A governing committee determines a list of inductees based on a set of criteria including:

The inductees are announced each year in July at a gala event. Since 2014 the QBLHOF has also awarded an annual Fellowship, to recipients working on a research project that utilises the resources of the John Oxley Library to produce new interpretations of Queensland's business history.[69]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "Library Board of Queensland". State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 2 February 2024.
  2. ^ a b "Libraries Act 1988". Queensland Government Queensland Legislation. Archived from the original on 13 November 2017. Retrieved 13 November 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d "History – State Library of Queensland". Archived from the original on 24 November 2013.
  4. ^ John Oxley Library Archived 11 April 2019 at the Wayback Machine. State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 14 June 2019.
  5. ^ "Oxley Memorial Library of Queensland Act 1946" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 11 March 2016.
  6. ^ "Took Year To Get Librarian". The Courier-mail. No. 3221. Queensland, Australia. 21 March 1947. p. 3. Archived from the original on 7 March 2022. Retrieved 21 October 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  7. ^ "NEW LIBRARIAN'S 25 YEARS ON JOB". The Courier-mail. No. 3223. Queensland, Australia. 24 March 1947. p. 6. Archived from the original on 7 March 2022. Retrieved 21 October 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  8. ^ "IF AUSTRALIA IS TO KEEP ABREAST OF THE TIMES". The Courier-mail. No. 3327. Queensland, Australia. 24 July 1947. p. 2. Archived from the original on 7 March 2022. Retrieved 21 October 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  9. ^ McCorkindale, Shirley. "Stapleton, James Lawrence (1904–1979)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Archived from the original on 3 February 2023. Retrieved 3 February 2023.
  10. ^ Houghton, Des. "Building a better, bolder lifestyle". The Courier Mail. 9 May 2006: 30.
  11. ^ Indigenous Knowledge Centres Archived 26 August 2012 at the Wayback Machine. State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 30 June 2013.
  12. ^ Corporate information Archived 25 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine. State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 30 June 2013.
  13. ^ Claire Connelly (5 January 2011). "State Library of Queensland donates 50,000 photos to Wikimedia Commons". news.com.au. News Limited. Archived from the original on 12 October 2013. Retrieved 30 June 2013.
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  15. ^ "The Australian Memory of the World Register". National Committee of Australia Memory of the World. Retrieved 20 April 2023.
  16. ^ "Margaret Lawrie Torres Strait Island Collection | Australian Memory of the World". www.amw.org.au. Archived from the original on 29 March 2021. Retrieved 19 March 2021.
  17. ^ This Wikipedia article incorporates text from Margaret Lawrie Collection of Torres Strait Islands 1964-1998: treasure collection of the John Oxley Library (24 February 2021) by Lynn Meyers published by the State Library of Queensland under CC BY licence, accessed on 20 April 2023.
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  24. ^ "Anzac Day Commemoration Committee Minutes and Suggestions 1916-1922 | Australian Memory of the World". www.amw.org.au. Archived from the original on 29 March 2021. Retrieved 19 March 2021.
  25. ^ This Wikipedia article incorporates text from Anzac Day minute book added to the Australian Memory of the World Register by Dianne McKean published by the State Library of Queensland under CC BY licence, accessed on 5 March 2019.
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  29. ^ This Wikipedia article incorporates text from Dr Barbara Piscitelli AM Children’s Art Archive 1990-2020: Treasure collection of the John Oxley Library (15 November 2021) by Stella Read published by the State Library of Queensland under CC BY licence, accessed on 20 April 2023.
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