Brisbane's must-see art exhibitions

Brisbane’s art scene is flourishing and offers a year-round calendar of exhibitions. Whether you’re looking to reflect and browse through the work of an established local artist, or be inspired by some of the cutting-edge international contemporary art, you’ve come to the right place. 


Gerhard Richter: The Life of Images

Gerhard Richter

14 October 2017 - 4 February 2018

Gerhard Richter: The Life of Images will be the first substantial Australian exhibition of works by the German artist, widely recognised as one of the world's most influential living painters. With over 90 works spanning five decades of Richter's practice, it will include some of the most compelling and enigmatic pictures of the 20th and 21st centuries, and reveal the unparalleled influence of the artist on contemporary art.

Yayoi Kusama: Life is the Heart of a Rainbow

Yayoi Kusama: Life is the Heart of a Rainbow

4 November 2017 - 11 February 2018

Co-curated with the National Gallery Singapore, this vibrant exhibition surveys the work of leading contemporary Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. A wild and wonderful journey through significant moments in Kusama's career, the exhibition explores over seven decades of the artist's practice through more than 70 works.

Brisbane Powerhouse

Brisbane Powerhouse in New Farm

Wonderland Festival

23 November to 3 December

This year, Brisbane Powerhouse has brought together talented local performers for a unique carnival of comedy, burlesque, circus, music, theatre and more. Purveyors of all things weird and wonderful, Wonderland will tantalise you with more than 20 shows over 12 nights explicitly curated to surprise and delight.

REDSEA Gallery


John Waller

10 October - 5 November

Encountering the Australian landscape can lead to all sorts of experiences. John Waller’s abstract paintings transport us into a soft, abstracted world of sunrises and misty mornings. After spending time on Tasmania’s King Island, Waller’s observation of the land and sea directed his hand to soft layering, creating a velvety glow. Other works in the collection portray his take on the sun-pounded red earth; fields of dry grass, even crops struggling in the outback heat.

State Library of Queensland

Digital Futures Lab

21 April – 6 November

At Digital Futures Lab, discover smart cities and digital bodies, real-life robots and risky algorithms. Check out the latest techie gadgets, have a virtual reality experience or control a computer with your mind.

Metro Arts

Metro Arts

Donnas on the Run: Exhuming the Australian Badlands

18 October - 4 November

Donnas on the Run: Exhuming the Australian Badlands is the upshot of a recently formed collaboration between emerging artists Lucy Forsberg and Sally Molloy whose individual practices and interests orbit around issues of Australian identity, the Australian landscape, and the examination of colonial histories.

Disruptive (Ill) Logic

15 November - 2 December

Disruptive (Ill) Logic emerges from a need to address the disruptions and corruptions that colonialism has brought to him and his family, using refined mechanical logic to erode and expose assimilation-based cover-ups and facades.

Queensland Museum and Sciencentre

Gladiators: Heroes of the Colosseum 

Gladiators: Heroes of the Colosseum

23 June 2017 – 7 January 2018 

The exhibition features more than 120 artefacts, interactive games and displays to reveal who gladiators were, where they lived and how they trained. View archaeological treasures, including actual pieces of the Colosseum, elaborately decorated bronze gladiator helmets and original arms and armour preserved in the ashes of Pompeii.

Museum of Brisbane

Tastes Like Sunshine

Tastes Like Sunshine

18 August - 12 November

Tastes Like Sunshine: Flavours of Brisbane explores the delicious side of our city. Discover insights into the minds, and taste buds, of some of the River City’s most innovative contemporary chefs and indulge your other senses with new installations by Elizabeth Willing and Sean Rafferty. Experience food in a new light and savour this delicious taste of Brisbane. Pictured is the marshmallow wall - we know, right?

100% Brisbane

Until 30 June 2019

We are pulling back the layers of our city, going beneath the surface of high rises and the jacaranda trees to discover the very real heart of Brisbane’s story. You. Me. And everyone in between. This landmark exhibition also invites you to have your say and contribute to this incredible self-portrait of the city. 100% Brisbane will not only change the way you think about museums, it will change the way you think about Brisbane.

For more art exhibitions across Brisbane, use our events calendar to see what else is on.

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