Tate Modern gets all the attention, but the original Tate Gallery, founded by sugar magnate Sir Henry Tate, has a broader and more inclusive brief. Housed in a stately Portland stone building on the riverside, Tate Britain is second only to the National Gallery when it comes to British art. It’s also looking to steal back a bit of the limelight from its starrier sibling with a 20-year redevelopment plan called the Millbank Project: conserving the building’s original features, upgrading the galleries, opening new spaces to the public and adding a new café. The art here is exceptional. The historical collection includes work by Hogarth, Gainsborough, Reynolds, Constable (who gets three rooms) and Turner (in the superb Clore Gallery). Many contemporary works were shifter to the other Tate when it opened, but Stanley Spencer, Lucian Freud and Francis Bacon are all well represented, and Art Now installations showcase up-and-coming British artists. Temporary exhibitions include headline-hungry blockbusters and the annual controversy-courting Turner Prize exhibition (October-January). The gallery has a good restaurant and an exemplary gift shop.
|Venue name:||Tate Britain||Contact:|
|Opening hours:||Daily 10am-6pm (last admission for special exhibitions 5.15pm)|
|Price:||Free (permanent collection); admission charge applies for some temporary exhibitions|
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Art and Alcohol
Once it was healthier to drink gin rather than the water in London. Thankfully – or not – those days are long gone, but the act, or should that be the art of drinking, remains a constant source of creative inspiration. This BP spotlight display curated...Until Friday September 30 2016 FreeRead more
Conceptual Art in Britain 1964-1979
Your conceptual orange looks very much like your regular orange: round-ish, orange-ish, pitted skin. What makes Roelof Louw’s oranges different from the cornershop variety is what they stand for. ‘Soul City’ comprises 3,303 pieces of fruit arranged in...Contemporary art Until Monday August 29 2016Read more
Painting with Light
Nineteenth Century British painting, let’s face it, wasn’t exactly the edgiest moment in art history. But this new Tate Britain considers the period afresh by examining how it responded to the arrival of photography. And guess what? It hit the ground...Photography Until Sunday September 25 2016Read more
The Tate Britain Commission 2016: Pablo Bronstein
Children love Argentine artist Pablo Bronstein. Or at least they love his 2016 Tate Britain Commission, a performance currently running all day in the Duveen Galleries (the grand hallway) at Tate Britain. When little ones wander in, more often than not...Installation Until Sunday October 9 2016 FreeRead more
The Turner Prize
Artists Michael Dean, Anthea Hamilton, Helen Marten and Josephine Pryde are currently shortlisted for the prestigious visual art awards.Sculpture Tuesday September 27 2016 - Monday January 2 2017Read more
Over the years the coveted art prize’s annual exhibition has caused quite a stir amongst both critics and the general public. It’s been criticised for being sexist, politically incorrect, elitist and out of touch. It’s cemented the position of artists...Tuesday September 27 2016 - Sunday January 8 2017Read more
Paul Nash (1889-1946) exerts a strong influence over British painting. If he’s overlooked it’s because, in his powdery vistas, he can come across as mild mannered – too English. Yet the eccentricity and romanticism of his quasi-mystical landscapes is...Painting Wednesday October 26 2016 - Sunday March 5 2017Read more
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Great gallery, I prefer this to the tate modern. The permanent collection is much more interesting and the building is also worth a visit. Look out of the late at the tate events! All for free too.
Loved Turner and Bacon paintings and many more. Beautiful building and free admission with option for donation which makes the Tate accessible to everyone visiting London. Great gift shop.
Really interesting! There is a film piece by Douglas Gordon called 'Play Dead; Real Time' which I could honestly watch for hours.