Created by world-leading architects Herzog & de Meuron, the new Tate Modern will feature a complete re-hang, bringing together much-loved works from the collection with new acquisitions made for the nation since Tate Modern first opened in 2000. With 60 per cent more display space, the gallery of modern art will now feature over 250 artists from around 50 countries. It will reveal how art has evolved from the studios and salons where modernism was born to the live, interactive and socially-engaged projects happening around the world today.
The news comes after the gallery’s annual report showed 2014/15 was its best year ever for visits with a record 5.7 million visits to Tate Modern. Tate had the highest number of visits by young people for any art museum in the world with over 3.5 million under the age of thirty-five. It also presented the most successful exhibition in its history, Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs.
The Turbine Hall will become the heart of the new Tate Modern, with the existing 6-storey Boiler House on one side and the new 10-storey Switch House rising above the Tanks on the other. The new Switch House is now structurally complete, with work focusing on the interior fit-out and the unique brick facade. It will offer a spectacular variety of spaces for visitors and for art, from the raw industrial Tanks to a panoramic roof terrace overlooking the London skyline. There will also be new urban spaces to the south and west of the building, completing the site’s transformation from a closed, industrial ruin to an open, public space.
Tate Modern will present an even more diverse and international perspective on modern art. Encompassing all the new galleries in the Switch House as well as completely re-hung collection galleries in the existing Boiler House, the displays will explore connections between artists in cities across the globe, from São Paulo to Tokyo as well as the traditional centres of Berlin, Paris, London and New York. Performance, film, photography and installations will be fully integrated into the displays. There will also be spaces for pioneering digital engagement, reflection and debate in every wing of the museum and in a dedicated space in the centre of the new building.
Iconic works by major 20th century figures, such as Pablo Picasso, Joseph Beuys and Mark Rothko, will join artists introduced to the public by Tate Modern, including Saloua Raouda Choucair (b.1916, Lebanon), Meschac Gaba (b.1961, Benin) and Cildo Meireles (b.1948, Brazil). Many new acquisitions will also be shown here for the first time in 2016, from an installation of human hair and car bumpers by Sheela Gowda (b.1957, India), to a room full of giant burlap sacks by Magdalena Abakanowicz (b.1930, Poland), to an immersive multi-screen film by Cannes prize-winner Apichatpong Weerasethakul (b.1970, Thailand).
The project has been made possible by one of the largest cultural fundraising campaigns ever launched and through the enormous generosity of the Government, the Greater London Authority and many private foundations and individuals. In 2006 it was projected that the new building would cost £215m at 2012 prices. The scope of the project has grown and now includes renovation works on the existing building and the total project cost in line with 2016 prices is £260m.