Past Media Releases

Art exhibition adds $14m to Queensland economy

25 July 2014

Queensland’s economy has received a $14.51 million boost, thanks to the Gallery of Modern Art’s (GOMA) blockbuster Cai Guo-Qiang exhibition Falling Back to Earth.  

Arts Minister Ian Walker said Falling Back to Earth was a triumph for the Gallery and Queensland, and highlighted the economic advantages a cultural smash hit delivers to the State’s economy.

“Falling Back to Earth is an example of what can be achieved if a show captures Queenslanders’ imagination,” Mr Walker said.

“It was art Queenslanders wanted to see, and their patronage gave a strong return on this government’s investment in the arts, enhancing our reputation as a cultural destination.

“This unique display attracted more than 229,000 visits, which is the second highest attendance to a ticketed exhibition at the Gallery.

“We know about 42 percent of these people did not live in Brisbane. Cultural tourists stay longer and spend more, so successful exhibitions help our economy and create jobs. 

“Families in regional Queensland also got a taste of the exhibition with a program of interactive activities that toured to more than 60 regional Queensland galleries and community venues.”

Acting Minister for Tourism and Major Events Tracy Davis said the success of Falling Back to Earth was a prime example of how cultural experiences delivered significant tourism outcomes.

“The Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth exhibition provided a significant boost for Queensland’s tourism industry, with the event generating more than 115,000 visitor nights,” Ms Davis said.

“We are working hard to maximise visitor numbers to our State and achieve our goal of doubling annual overnight visitor expenditure from $15 billion to $30 billion by 2020.”

Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA) Director Chris Saines said the response to Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth had been overwhelming.

“We know Cai Guo-Qiang is one of the most important artists working today, and the audience’s incredible response has made Falling Back to Earth one of the most successful exhibitions at QAGOMA to date, alongside those of work by iconic 20th century artists Andy Warhol and Pablo Picasso,” Mr Saines said.

GOMA is currently showing Harvest, a celebration of food in art, until 21 September, and will present Future Beauty: 30 Years of Japanese Fashion from 1 November 2014 until 15 February 2015. 

[ENDS] 25 July 2014 

Media contacts: Minister Walker’s office: 0409 126 332
Minister Stuckey’s office: 3719 7240