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Art From Us MUSEUM GUIDE : Tate Modern : A View From Between Man & Matter

Today we arrive Tate Modern – A Modern View from Between Man & Matter. For our weekly Museum Guide excursion, led by Divvya Nirula. As we journey through the gallery, we also consider leadership and the Tate. And acquaint ourselves with 2 of its directors. Alan Bowness & John Rothenstein.

This gallery explores sculptural practices in the East and West in the 1970s. Presented here are our top three must-see objects on view here. Next time you visit the museum, do not miss these!

1. Last Ladder, 1959, by Carl Andre
2. From Surface to Surface, 1971, by Susumu Koshimizu
3. Breath 5, 1931, by Giuseppe Penone

image credit for artworks : Tate Modern

Some fun facts about the Museum : Alan Bowness & John Rothenstein

  • Sir Alan Bowness, director of the Tate from 1980 to 1988, had succeeded Sir Norman Reid. Reid was the 6th director. He held office from 1964 to 1979.
  • Reid’s most important contribution was acquiring Modern & Contemporary works from Europe and America. Additionally, he was known for having close interpersonal relationships with artists. Which resulted in many donations and collaborations. Rothko’s Seagram paintings – hung in the Rothko room – were also acquired during this time.
  • Sir John Rothenstein was director before Reid, from 1938 to 1964.
  • Rothenstein was responsible for updating the Tate’s collection of British art. Hitherto, the collection did not represent any Modern, 20th century art. He was responsible for acquiring works by Lucian Freud, Francis Bacon and their contemporaries.

A Final Thought :

Considering the leadership styles and contributions of the Tate’s various directors is interesting. Why? Because we are better able to gauge how the Tate has become the art powerhouse it is today. The name Tate is associated with great art. Intriguing exhibitions and a quality experience. Obviously, this did not happen overnight. It has taken several decades of vision, planning and execution. Thus, it is fascinating to get acquainted with the faces behind this prestigious institution.


Visit Art From Us Archive for Museum Guide collated by Divvya Nirula. Here you shall find more suggestions on where you should visit next. And what you should see there.

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