Coming Soon! First Signature Masterpiece Installation at Queen’s Wharf

The first signature masterpiece installation for the $3.6-billion Queen’s Wharf development has been selected and will be in place by mid-2023.

“Being Swallowed by the Milky Way” by Brisbane painter and sculptor of Chinese heritage, Lindy Lee, is the first artwork which will be unveiled by The Star as part of its public art procurement program for the Queen’s Wharf development. 

Lindy Lee’s artwork will be an 8-metre, 8,000-kilogram bronze sculpture which will be installed at the George Street atrium entrance to the hotel and casino. 

The internationally renowned artist’s recent work is the $14 million commission from the National Gallery of Australia which is considered to be the most expensive work to be acquired by the NGA.

Ouroboros, created for the National Gallery of Australia’s 40th anniversary
Photo credit: National Gallery of Australia /

Ms Lee will be working with Brisbane-based Urban Art Projects who will breathe life to her masterpiece. The installation will feature thousands of tiny holes on its surface to create an illusion of a shimmering “galaxy” when lit at night.

“On a personal level, this is the most significant commission I’ve ever been awarded,” Ms Lee said, adding that she is proud to be included in The Star’s unique and creative project that “will be such a sophisticated addition to my hometown.”

She said that when she left the city in the late 70s to get an art education, Brisbane was lacking in “cultural inspiration,” but things have changed since then. Ms Lee said that she returns as an “established artist” to a city that is now “culturally advanced.”

“I am currently working on some prestigious overseas commissions, but the sculpture I have designed for Queen’s Wharf Brisbane is an important project to me. It will be a joy,” she said.

The Specialist Artistic Advisory panel that curated the stellar artworks collection was led by leading art dealer and philanthropist Philip Bacon AO alongside art curator and director of the Institute of Modern Art Liz Nowell and indigenous artist and administrator Avril Quaill. 

“Securing a major Lindy Lee sculpture is a coup for the city,” Mr Bacon said.

“Lindy’s distinctive works are already found in many of the world’s greatest cities, and it is fitting that Queen’s Wharf Brisbane will be home to one of her largest and most elegant creations.”

Lindy Lee, The Life of Stars, 2018, stainless steel, dimensions variable; courtesy the artist, Sullivan+Strumpf and UAP | Photo credit: Saul Steed – Lindy Lee Studio / Facebook

“It will truly be a must-visit attraction in its own right.”

“A defining moment in Queensland’s largest urban development” is how The Star Entertainment Group’s Managing Director and CEO, Matt Bekier described the announcement.

“We and our partners are thrilled to have commissioned Lindy Lee to create the signature art piece and we look forward to revealing the other talent the advisory panel has identified,” Mr  Bekier said.

“These artworks will be showcased to millions of people, who will visit this precinct for years to come, including for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

“It will further position Brisbane, not just as an Olympic city, but as a vibrant cultural playground, complementing the Southbank precinct just a short bridge walk across the river.

“We have bold plans for art and culture to be a visitation driver for the precinct with sculptures, paintings, visual and performing arts and potentially galleries and exhibitions delivering a unique and exciting offering.

“We are creating a world class tourism and entertainment destination that locals will be proud of, and interstate and international visitors will want to visit.”

The collection of artworks will be featured across the 7.5-hectare public space within the QWB including the waterfront areas next to the Brisbane River.

Ms Lee’s artwork is slated to be in place in mid-2023 coinciding with the development’s first stage opening.