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Brief Published: 19 Jul 2012

The Tanks: New Galleries at the Tate Modern, London


London’s Tate Modern has launched the Tanks, a new exhibition and gallery space designed to celebrate the enduring relationship between art and performance. 

The launch coincides with the London 2012 Festival (June 21 to September 9) – the cultural Olympiad twinned with this year’s London 2012 Olympic Games. The exhibition space, located on the south side of the Turbine Hall, was designed by Swiss architectural firm Herzog & de Meuron.

The galleries comprise three industrial, underground chambers, which were previously used to store fuel for the bankside power station. They had not been used since 1981. The industrial look of the galleries stands in stark contrast to the sleek, white spaces that dominate the rest of the Tate.

The space will host live art performances, installations and films, bringing together newly commissioned works by up-and-coming artists, as well as reconstructions of classic performances.

A further extension by Herzog & de Meuron, currently in progress, will be added to the building’s southern edge. It will expand the performance and exhibition spaces by 60%, focusing on performance art, film screenings and photography. 

The first exhibition in the Tanks will feature new conceptual video art by Korean artists Sung Hwan Kim and Haegue Yang. The installation has been described as a response to the newly minted architecture.

Tate Modern 

Herzog & de Meuron