The Queensland Design Strategy 2020 is positioning Queensland as a leading centre for design in Australia and the Asia-Pacific region.

Through 2011, the impact of the strategy was evidenced by the increasing role and influence of the Queensland Design Council and increased activation of QUEENSLANDERSIGN™, an initiative which recognises objects, buildings, systems or services, events, projects and activities which embody outstanding and innovative design in our State.

2012 launches on the wave of two great successes of the Council and QUEENSLANDERSIGN™ supported events. On 23 November 2011, the Council supported the Honourable Rachel Nolan MP, Minister for Finance, Natural Resources and The Arts as she introduced Canadian designer Bruce Mau at the State Library of Queensland‘s annual Nielson Design Lecture series.

The Nielson Design Lecture is a signature program that features internationally renowned designers and architects who present innovative ideas, works and methods on ‘designing our future’.  As part of the series Bruce Mau, a designer, author and self-proclaimed ‘futurist’ with 25 years of design industry experience was invited  to share his findings on Southeast Queensland’s built and natural environment.

During the talk Mau called upon Brisbane designers to take up ‘one of the most extraordinary opportunities in history’ and invest in a design-led, sustainable future for the state.  Among his ideas included a zero energy bill that would position Brisbane as world leader in civic life, and a 99% art program that would encourage visitors to the state.

Mau has collaborated with many of today’s leading architects and commercial companies, and is the driving force behind ‘Massive Change‘, an initiative that investigates the dilemmas of design in the areas of urbanism’, marketing, health, education, leadership, and security, and transforms these findings  into purposeful, sustainable solutions.

Watch a video video podcast of Bruce Mau’s lecture, presented by the State Library of Queensland.  Learn more about ‘Massive Change.

Activating change is also a key driver for TEDx Brisbane, an independently-organised Brisbane event modeled after the annual TED conference in California. TED is a platform for people to share their stories, ideas, findings and inspirations under a general theme of ‘Ideas Worth Spreading.’

TEDx Brisbane was established in 2010 by Carl Lindgren of Map magazine and Paul Fairweather of Creative Culture.  Taking place on 15 October 2011, the event was proudly supported by State Library of Queensland and QUEENSLANDERSIGN™. 

As a separate encore to this event, TEDx Brisbane invited UK artist Stephen Wiltshire to come to Brisbane to draw a real-time, large-scale replication of the Brisbane CBD skyline. Wiltshire is widely-celebrated for his incredible ability to intricately draw large-scale cityscapes after only having viewed them briefly. The artist’s unique drawn-from-memory method has led him to draw his way around the world and sketch major city skylines including New York, Tokyo, Madrid, Hong Kong, Dubai, and now Brisbane.

For the Brisbane project the artist was first taken aboard a helicopter to view the city skyline for several minutes. Upon landing, Wiltshire went straight to the State Library of Queensland to meticulously draw the distinctive buildings, landscapes, bridges and streets that line our city’s river. The four-metre artwork, sketched in front of a live audience over four days (26-29 November), has since been framed, and will be on view again to the public later this year.

In 2006 Wiltshire was recognised for his services to Art by Queen Elizabeth II, who awarded him the Member of the Order of the British Empire medal. An inspirational achievement considering Wiltshire was diagnosed as autistic when he was 3 and didn’t fully speak until he was 9. In a ‘7.30 Report’ segment on Wiltshire, the State Library of Queensland praised the artist, describing his Brisbane drawing as a rare ‘snapshot’ of the city, and an artwork to be appreciated.

View the time-lapse video of Stephen Wiltshire drawing the Brisbane panorama:

Visit Stephen Wiltshire’s image and video library, as well as his blog about the Brisbane project click.

Also, keep a look out for the next TEDx Brisbane event, which will be held late 2012. In the meantime you can visit the TEDx Brisbane website for event information and information on previous speakers.

Image of Bruce Mau and time-lapse video of Stephen Wiltshire courtesy of State Library of Queensland.

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