Experience Gold Coast beach culture from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s, immortalised by acclaimed photographer Graham Burstow in a photographic exhibition at Brisbane Powerhouse.

We are a beach culture here in Queensland and we love to spend our days swimming in the surf and embracing the sunshine. The Gold Coast is especially synonymous with the surf scene and during the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s, the region boomed as tourists and locals alike flocked to the shores for a chance at a relaxed and sun-kissed life; filled with beer belly contests, muttonbird tanning oil and sun girl quests.

This was an era prior to the internet and digital photography and moments could only be captured once. Amateur photographer and social documentarian Graham Burstow came down from Toowoomba on his annual family holiday during the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s and took photograph after photograph. He used to moved freely among the crowds, contestants and modest props, chatting and photographing human interactions and shapes on very close-up and public display.

His black-and-white hand-printed images capture the essence of this special era at the Gold Coast, and yet are timeless in terms of the stories and emotions they convey and when you wander through the collection at Brisbane Powerhouse, you will transported back to those days.

Graham Burstow has been a passionate black-and-white stills photographer for over seventy years. His silver gelatin prints have been acquired by the National Library of Australia, State Library of Queensland and Queensland Art Gallery and appeared in solo and group exhibitions locally, nationally and internationally. In 2004, he was presented with an Order of Australia Medal for Services to Photography in Australia.

The exhibition runs until November 2. For more details, check out our event guide listing.