The Tate Britain is arguably London’s forgotten Museum, often overlooked in favour of The Tate Modern, the National Gallery, and the ever popular Science Museum and V&A. However, if you are a fan of art the Tate Britain offers the public the chance to enjoy a permanent collection of historic and contemporary British art. The Gallery is situated on the site of the former Milbank prison just minutes from Pimlico tube station and a 15-20 minute walk from the Houses of Parliament this small and intimate museum, which is never too crowded, and a great way to spend a weekend morning or afternoon.
I have been several times with a variety of different people, some have enjoyed others haven’t. But much like all art, whether you enjoy it is all subjective. The walls and floors of the building house famous artists, such as; Tracey Emin, Francis Bacon, J. M. W. Turner, Henry Moore and many more key figures in British art. I have been several times since my move to London nearly a year ago and in this period it has gone over a very expensive facelift. In 2012, the museum announced that is had managed to raise £45 million to carry out serious renovations.
I recently went back to the museum a couple of weekends ago, about a week after it’s big unveil. You cannot argue that it is all very impressive; new entrance, staircase and event space. However, as much of the renovations are underground, unless you venture away from the main galleries, you won’t really notice. But you’re there to see art anyway so it doesn’t really matter. Whether you like the renaissance, contemporary, modern (never really understood it myself), portraits or landscapes there is definitely something for everyone.
The marketing/pr/events team at the Tate are trying their hardest to reach out to a younger audience, and maybe even just increase their visitor footfall, by offering a variety of Galleries as event space. Late with Tate Britain on the first Friday of every month, and half-priced admissions to exhibitions and probably the most exciting selling point is that you might stumble across some live music and performance art are some of a few of the key strategies they are using to upsell the Tate Britain. In September, a friend and me stumbled across Clean Bandit playing with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment playing to an intimate audience in one of the Galleries. I guess that’s why I keep going back. You never know what you are going to stumble across. The Tate has promised to hold more events like this and if you have a quiet weekend it is certainly worth a visit.