Tate Modern opens a new era for modern and contemporary art

The New Tate Modern © Hayes Davidson and Herzog & de Meuron

Tate Modern today revealed plans for entirely new collection displays which will be shared with the public upon the official opening of the new Switch House building on 17th June 2016. The new displays will demonstrate how the collection has been transformed since Tate Modern first opened. The world’s most popular gallery of modern art will be even more international, diverse and engaging, with works by over 300 artists from around the world displayed across the existing Boiler House and the new Switch House.

Old friends and new friends will be brought together, with works by Mark Rothko, Agnes Martin and Henri Matisse joining new acquisitions from Latin America, Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Eastern Europe, including Meschac Gaba, Sheela Gowda and Cildo Meireles. The most recent work to join the collection will take centre stage in the Turbine Hall: a huge sculpture of a tree almost seven metres tall, created by acclaimed artist Ai Weiwei.

The new Tate Modern will open with three weeks of live art. This free programme, part of the ongoing BMW Tate Live partnership, will include performance-based works from Tate’s collection staged intermittently throughout the building, from Tania Bruguera’s police on horseback, to Tino Sehgal’s gallery attendants bursting into song and Amalia Pica’s actors holding up a string of bunting. The Tanks – the world’s first museum spaces dedicated to live art – will also host new performance commissions running every day from 17 June to 3 July 2016, highlighting the place of live art in the 21st century museum.

Guerrilla Girls, no title 1985–90

Guerrilla Girls, no title 1985–90

To celebrate the new Tate Modern, the gallery will stay open until 22:00 each evening for an opening weekend of special events, supported by Uniqlo. The centrepiece of the weekend will be a specially-commissioned choral work by artist Peter Liversidge, performed at 17:00 on Saturday 18 June by over 500 singers from community choirs across London. This cycle of songs was inspired by conversations the artist held with gallery staff, construction workers, visitors and local residents. Free screenings of film and video works from Tate’s collection by artists including Derek Jarman, Andrea Fraser and Rabih Mroue will be held throughout each day in the newly refurbished Starr Cinema, while special events for young people and families will take place across the weekend.

Nicholas Serota, Director at Tate, had this to say of the new museum:

“When we open the new Tate Modern in June 2016, we will be creating a new museum for the 21st century that reflects a truly international view of art. This exciting public building will add a new dimension to UK cultural life. It will give everyone an opportunity to see how the nation’s collection of modern and contemporary art has been transformed, and to experience what a powerful role art can play in all our lives.”

Turbine Hall, one of Tate Modern's existing live art spaces

Turbine Hall, one of Tate Modern’s existing live art spaces

One of the most exciting developments of the new Tate Modern will be the launch of an ambitious ‘open experiment’ called Tate Exchange. Occupying an entire floor of the new Switch House building, it will invite over 50 organisations to participate in Tate Modern’s creative process for the very first time, running events and projects on site and using art as a way of addressing wider issues in the world around us. The programme will bring together artists such as Guerrilla Girls and Tim Etchells alongside charities, community radio stations, universities and healthcare trusts.

3,000 school children from across the UK, from Orkney to St Ives, will be the first members of the public to see the new Tate Modern at a special preview on Thursday 16 June 2016.

Welcomed by artist Bob and Roberta Smith, these children will get an exclusive opportunity to explore the new displays and the new building, and be inspired by modern and contemporary art from around the world.

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