Citizens Gateway to the Great Barrier Reef
Brian Robinson

The vitality and beauty of the Great Barrier Reef is reflected in the Citizens Gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, an iconic public artwork unveiled on the Cairns Esplanade on 31 August 2017.

The artwork is a symbol for Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef, a social movement to engage the world in the future of the World Heritage area.

Nationally recognised Torres Strait Islander artist Brian Robinson was commissioned to create an iconic artwork that would anchor Cairns as the primary entry point for visitors to the Reef. His 6 metre-high and 11 metre-wide helix depicts a wave of marine creatures and birds led by a life-size stingray to reflect the biodiversity of the Great Barrier Reef.

Framing the view to the Reef from the Cairns Esplanade, the Citizens Gateway will inspire those who walk beneath it and see their reflection in its mirror-polish stainless steel to think about their connection to the Great Barrier Reef.

Stretching for 2300km along the Queensland coast, the Great Barrier Reef is central to the life and livelihoods of many Queenslanders, and as a barometer of the health of our planet its future should be important to people around the world.

Tourism Tropical North Queensland (TTNQ) initiated this public art project. Other funding partners for the artwork include:

  • Australian Government - Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority
  • Queensland Government – Arts Queensland and Commonwealth Games Public Domain Improvement Program
  • Ports North
  • Cairns Regional Council

Creation of the artwork involved collaboration with local Traditional Owners the Gimuy Walubara Yidinji and the Yirrganydji people, artist Brian Robinson, Tourism Tropical North Queensland, the Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef (CoGBR) Foundation, Cairns Regional Council, curators and project managers CREATIVEMOVE, fabricators UAP and site designer Total Project Group Architects.

Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation

The Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef (CoGBR) Foundation will raise awareness across the globe of the challenges and health of the reef, and how citizens can work collaboratively to learn, inform, participate and advocate to save the reef for future generations to enjoy and continue to look after.

The CoGBR Foundation is governed by a Management Board/Committee composed of the Founding Partners: Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, James Cook University, and Tourism Tropical North Queensland (TTNQ).

The Foundation invites citizens from all parts of our planet to celebrate, learn about, help preserve and enjoy one of our planet’s most extraordinary natural wonders. For more information, visit the Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef website.

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