The Tate Modern opened their doors to the press this morning to introduce their new, massive extension.
‘Switch House’, designed by Herzog & de Meuron, is a 10 storey 200 foot structure located at the back of the Tate Modern.
With an almost dogtooth-like pattern brick work. Dogtooth meets waffles.
And a milky concrete interior.
More than half of the art shown in Switch House is by female artists, with a focus on lesser known artists.
That said, paradoxically, I visited the Louise Bourgeois rooms first.
Followed by the ‘Living Cities’ room, which housed a map of Beirut Caoutchouc by Marwan Rechmaoui made from rubber…
And a sculpture made of couscous!
I lost count of the number of picture windows interspersed-between-lattice I saw…
This is the new Tate Exchange space on Level 5: launching in September, with the aim of encouraging up and coming artists and addressing the wider issues in the world around us and the value of art to society, it will be an always changing, experimental space, evolving to current needs.
Back into the exhibition realms. The new space is set to embrace performance art with an informal and interactive feeling:
Since the 1960s artists around the world have focused in a new way about making objects, and the relationship between art and architecture (very fitting for this new extension at the Tate Modern) so a room dedicated to this way of thinking has opened.
This mirrored cube sculpture called ‘The Passing Winter’ by artist Yayoi Kusama invites you to peer into a circle in the box and see mirrors…
An explosion of mirrors and reflections!
I was particularly drawn to the new bar area and restaurant.
(The picture window theme continues. Perfect for generation Instagram.)
With finishing touches still in progress…
Although the best is yet to come:
The view from the 10th floor – the new roof terrace!
When you go, make sure the panoramic setting on your camera is ready.
Take in the sea of glass.
At some point we need to have a conversation about this building:
About the pointed sitting rooms; how the scale of them from this perspective makes it look like a giant doll house filled with miniature furniture; about the different bar stools in each kitchen, and the perfect spacing between these bar stools; who lives here; who cleans them; the apogee of window cleaning; pseudo-Centre Pompidou, elongated; and how seeing this makes me think of the film ‘Rear Window’.
I felt very lucky to have the roof terrace practically to myself. Soon it will be full of footsteps and blue skies.
Back down on the ground, another new Tate Modern Bar:
While I was there, a press conference was held by Lord Browne and the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan.
‘Switch House’ opens to the public this Friday 17th June and this weekend it will stay open until 10pm each evening for a series of special events.
It’s such an incredible space, I thoroughly enjoyed my morning of exploring!