The Art Museum presents an aesthetic display space showcasing the visual arts, but it also boasts the legacy of a beautiful pipe organ. Whereas this organ once stood as the centerpiece of a concert hall, it is now a dignified presence that broods with curiosity over its surrounding art exhibitions.
No two pipe organs are exactly alike. Each has its individual features and unique mix of location and acoustic. The Art Museum’s organ was built between in 1974-76 to specifications designed by Sydney Organ builder Roger Pogson, in collaboration with Robert Boughen. The casework was constructed by Laukhuff Organ Builders of Germany, before installation and voicing by Roger Pogson. The organ has three manuals, 45 speaking stops, 6 couplers and is a tracker (mechanical) action orga
When the James and Emelia Mayne Centre was converted into the UQ Art Museum, the organ was dismantled in mid-2003. It was subsequently reinstalled in the refurbished building in 2004 by W. J. Simon Pierce. Whilst the Organ was originally built for the the Mayne Centre as a concert hall, the redesign of the building to be an art gallery has actually improved the acoustic for the organ.
The Johnian Duo has embraced this visual and musical presence of this sleeping giant, by charming it awake with the crystal clear sound of woodwind (in various incarnations of the baroque recorder), whilst occasionally unleashing its vast power as a concert hall organ.