'The Gallery Dedicated To Lenticular Art And Photography'

Great modern art galleries; Tate

Based in central London, the Tate Modern art galleries are the home of the UK’s national collection of modern and contemporary art, and one of the world’s largest art museums dedicated to the post-1900s art periods. Receiving almost 6 million visitors a year pre-pandemic, it is also amongst the most popular art galleries in the world for any kind of artworks.

Set in the old Bankside power station, Tate Modern was developed from the original building in the late 1990s, retaining many of the industrial features, spaces, and machinery. These include the cavernous main turbine hall, which is regularly used for a range of large scale temporary installations from some of the leading contemporary artists in the world.

Opened in 2000 the Tate Modern was immediately popular, and a major extension was rapidly planned, funded, and went into progress during the 2010s, developing the brutalist looking power station oil tanks underneath the main building, and the old switch house, into new spaces for performance art, exhibition, and education facilities.

The London Tate Modern art gallery collection

Exhibition spaces at the museum tend to revolve around eight themes or subjects, such as the artist and society, or materials and objects, each displaying regularly changing work across a range of rooms. These usually include an exhibit of works focused on explaining the basic concepts behind modern art. As you may expect from such a high profile gallery, the collection covers a broad range of great contemporary and modern artists including pieces by Braque, Picasso, Gleizes, Delaunay, Monet, Gris, Kirchner, Rothko, Klee, Lichtenstein, Dali, and Warhol.

Though strong on artists, the collection has comparatively few truly famous individual artworks, and a lot of the draw to visitors is in experiencing the dramatic temporary exhibitions in the turbine hall, unique live arts, and many innovative approaches to exhibition and contemporary work. In many ways the Tate Modern art gallery itself is as much the star of the show as the artists.

Turbine hall exhibitions always draw the most media attention, with the vast space and substantial sponsorship funding encouraging some of the most exciting contemporary artists to think on a truly ambitious scale. Some of the artists previously featured include Anish Kapoor, Olafur Eliasson, Rachel Whiteread, Ai Weiwei, and Bruce Nauman, each of whom brought a unique and dramatic new look to the art gallery interior.

There are also more traditional temporary exhibitions including retrospectives of Matisse and Gilbert and George, installation and video art exhibitions commissioned for the underground oil tank spaces, and regular projects with other art organisations; a huge attraction to the gallery is in it’s unique spaces and ever shifting range of exhibits and presentations.

A modern art gallery perfectly pitched to it’s content and purpose

Where some modern art galleries are simply a gallery showing modern art, the Tate presents artworks uniquely in striking looking repurposed industrial surroundings, which feels incredibly true to the many post 1900 movements which struggled to find acceptance in mainstream galleries, and so went and found it’s own.

And though it lacks in very many great masterpieces, few people visit the Tate Modern to see Warhol’s Marilyn Triptych or Rothko’s Seagram Murals, they go to see unique and interesting works of art in a remarkable space; it’s a complete experience of modern and contemporary thinking as to what an art gallery can be.

Admired around the world for it’s innovation and leadership in the art world, for such a young art museum the Tate Modern has made an incredible impact in the art world, taking a place among strong competition as one of the UK’s favourite art galleries, and as one of the world’s most innovative.