New Farm Park, Brisbane

Sunday, January 1, 2012

GENERATOR

The Brisbane Powerhouse Theatre situated at New Farm on the banks of the Brisbane River is a stunning industrial creation for contemporary performing arts and a multi-arts venue.

The Powerhouse Theatre
Originally it was built to provide electricity for a huge tram network and local suburbs between 1928 and 1940. It was designed by R.R. Ogg. As trams gave way to buses the powerhouse was decommissioned in 1970. The derelict building provided shelter for the homeless, target practice for the army, a location for film makers and a canvas for graffiti artists.
The entrance
In 1989 the powerhouse was identified as being culturally significant and the concept of a centre for the arts was born. It was redeveloped by the council and designed by P. Roy.

The building comes alive when it is full of people
The Powerhouse Theatre was opened in 2000 and refurbished in 2007. There are theatres, restaurants, bars function and conference spaces.

There are many levels and open spaces.
The mayor and designers decided to keep as much of the original building as it was so it still looks like an industrial building but it has state of the art equipment for the theatres and multi-media spaces.





The pillars have been left in the state that they were in the derelict building but they have been painted with a clear enamel to keep them clean and safe for visitors. The light is made from electrical insulators found on the site.

Most of the graffiti has been kept also and is actually heritage listed. Offensive stuff was removed. Renown Graffiti artists Anthony Lister, Blek Le Rat and Kasino were commissioned to add more modern graffiti . It really gives the place a very modern, young atmosphere. It is an exciting building to visit and if you are into avant guard theatre productions, the shows are good too. 

We were visiting the theatre for a very proud moment. Our son in law, David, was commissioned to produce an audio guide for the building. He worked for over a year putting together a collection of interviews, sounds and music which tell about the history, the redesign, the art, and the spaces  of the building.
It has been developed as an Application called GENERATOR for an iphone or ipad and can be listened to while touring the building or at home. We have found it very informative and an excellent production.
So this night was the launching of the GENERATOR by David Pickvance. The audience was provided with cheese platters and wine.

David outlines the content and how he collected all the data for the audio tour.

David shows members of the audience how the app works on a phone. It is a free application and can be downloaded here. David is a composer and you can see more of his work here (scroll over the orange berries on the tree)

29 comments:

  1. Looks like a great place to visit Diane...That`s what you call recycling....Hope you had a lovely Christmas and hoping that the New Year brings you much happiness

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  2. I love any "living" artspace, and the way the building has been resurrected gives it a lot of character.
    Thanks for the tour!

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  3. What an amazing building full of wonderful things and events! I would love to spend time there. I also loved the photo of your forest hike. Lovely! You are in way better shape than I am! :)

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  4. How fantastic What a great purpose for the building and what an interesting job your son in law has. Wish you all the best for 2012

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  5. I am scratching my head as to why Melbourne doesn't have an old large inner suburban power house like London and Brisbane? It looks great.

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  6. What a fabulous idea for preserving a piece of history. I like that they kept as much of the old as possible including the graffiti. This look like it would be a great place to explore. I took a look at David's page. I love the music that plays on the home page.

    Happy New Year!

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  7. This is wonderful!!! And congratulations to your SIL. I have seen a few reclaimed spaces come and go but none that h. Tave been responsive to the new art, ie the graffiti artists to begin with in quite the same way. This is exciting. I will certainly make an effort to get to it on my next Qld visit.

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  8. Interesting place I will have to tell my son's GF she was in Melbourne uni and now she is traveling around Oz I just read she is in Brisbane.

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  9. That is a nice post, you have a very talented son in law. I like it that industrial old buildings are transformed in creative spots and don't have to be broken down. This development is going on here too.

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  10. Yes, I, too, like the way they recycle old industrial buildings. I love connections to the past. Well done to David. Hometown lad made good.

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  11. your header photo is AWESOME and i love the light fixture and the purple chairs and the glass entrance. a place i would love to visit

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  12. I like it when the historical sites are kept in today's society...beautiful place. Neat for your son in law to have a part in it

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  13. Looks like a very impressive building. I like the fact that some good graffitis were kept, because some are really artistic and has nothing to do with taggers !

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  14. Please tell David congrats. What an honor this is. Hope you had a nice Holiday Season, and best of love and wishes for the New Year 2012. I know someone who will have two grandchildren soon too!

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  15. Wow, this is so awesome! I love what they've done with this old building and David's contribution is amazing. I checked on the site and I love the way that's set up. It's simple and easy to figure out. Awesome job David!

    Have an excellent day!

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  16. You do lead the most interesting life! I love seeing your wonderful photos. ...Marsha

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  17. Hi Diane, We have so many old buildings like that in our country which desperately need some new life... I love what they've done to that building in your area... Neat!!!!!

    David is very talented. I know that you all are proud of him... Your girls both did WELL with their men, didn't they????

    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  18. So good to see a building like this being repurposed so effectively. And what a talented family you have.

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  19. In the "New World" there are four "R's" Recycle, repair, reuse, and re-purpose. This wonderful project is a fabulous example of re-purpose. Congratulations to your son as an interesting partner of the effort.

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  20. I was very impressed with the conversion of this building even before I got to the part about your son-in-law's involvement with the project. You should be very proud of him and of the entire project.

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  21. Hi Diane, what an amazing building. Looks very cool inside. Congrats to your SIL for his creation, a great idea. I enjoyed this post and your photos. Have a great week!

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  22. Fantastic building Diane and how wonderful for your son-in-law. It must be so rewarding to see all his hard work come to fruition.

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  23. What an amazing place and space Diane! Hope your Christmas and New Year were fabulous. Onwards and upwards to meet 2012 head on!

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  24. What a fascinating concept "coming of age". Thanks for sharing this Dianne and pride in your son-in-law's achievement is understandable. I enjoy "visiting" regions of Australia I am unlikely to in reality, through your photos. Wishing you and yours a healthy and adventurous 2012.

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  25. Great job on the building -- most interesting. I've no doubt that the audio guide is equally as well done (if not even better!) How fun to get to attend the special launch.

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  26. A wonderful way to repurpose the building!

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  27. Quite interesting how they kept that graffiti.

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  28. That electric insulator light is SO intriguing!! And great to see a landmark structure actually being restored and reused rather than destroyed and downplayed!

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