Photographer: Jack Taylor/Getty Images

Tour the Tate Modern’s $372 Million New Wing, London’s Latest Marvel

The Tate Modern, London’s most prestigious destination for 20th and 21st century art, has completed an 11-level, 212-foot-high tower, which expands its exhibition and performance space by 60 percent. Check out the addition, designed by the Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron, ahead of the crush of visitors.

  1. The Tower Behind the Existing Tate

    The Tower Behind the Existing Tate

    With a brick facade, the new tower—called the Switch House—fits with the existing Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall.

    Photographer: Iwan Baan via Tate Modern

  2. A Twisted Pyramid

    A Twisted Pyramid

    Herzog & de Meuron, the designers of the extension, were the (then-unknown) duo chosen in 1995 to renovate the Turbine Hall, which opened in 2000.

    Photographer: Jack Taylor/Getty Images

  3. Pyramid


    The new wing’s exterior showing the detailed, perforated brick lattice, through which light shines at night.

    Photographer: Iwan Baan via Tate Modern

  4. The Spiral Staircase

    The Spiral Staircase

    Visitors enter the new wing via the Tanks, a lower-level space for performance and film.

    Photographer: Iwan Baan via Tate Modern

  5. Raw Materials

    Raw Materials

    The spiral staircase on Level 4; the new wing echoes the materials used in the original Turbine Hall.

    Source: Tate Photography

  6. Soaring Galleries

    Soaring Galleries

    The architects aimed to create a variety of rooms and spaces. That said, every room is invariably primed to showcase the large, attention-grabbing art installations favored by today’s contemporary museums.

    Photographer: Jack Taylor/Getty Images

  7. The 10th Floor

    The 10th Floor

    Like the main body of the Tate Modern, the new building’s top floor offers panoramic views of the London skyline.

    Photographer: Iwan Baan via Tate Modern

  8. Natural Light, in Small Doses

    Natural Light, in Small Doses

    Level 6 of the tower; light filters in through the building’s facade.

    Source: Tate Photography

  9. Louise Bourgeois’s “Spider”

    Louise Bourgeois’s “Spider”

    Much has been made of the building’s emphasis on women artists, such as the late sculptor Louise Bourgeois, whose iconic Spider is seen here.

    Photographer: Jack Taylor/Getty Images

  10. “Babel,” by Cildo Meireles

    “Babel,” by Cildo Meireles

    Monumentality is a seductive and oft-leaned-upon crutch by museums looking to justify their colossally expensive expansions. The Switch House’s opening exhibition is no exception.

    Source: Tate Modern

  11. “Beirut Caoutchouc,” by Marwan Rechmaoui

    “Beirut Caoutchouc,” by Marwan Rechmaoui

    The extension is the result of one of the most expensive cultural fundraising efforts in Britain’s history.

    Photographer: Jack Taylor/Getty Images

  12. “Square Tubes [Series D],” by Charlotte Posenenske

    “Square Tubes [Series D],” by Charlotte Posenenske

    The building isn’t just about showing art—it includes spaces for performance, video, and simply for circulation among visitors.

    Source: Tate Photography

  13. “Untitled (Ghardaïa),” by Kader Attia

    “Untitled (Ghardaïa),” by Kader Attia

    This sculpture is made entirely of couscous.

    Photographer: Jack Taylor/Getty Images

  14.  A Performance Next to a Work by Donald Judd

    A Performance Next to a Work by Donald Judd

    Art has evolved, argue the Tate’s architects and its director, Nicholas Serota. A 21st century museum should, too.

    Photographer: Jack Taylor/Getty Images

  15. “Pavilion Suspended in a Room I,” by Cristina Iglesias

    “Pavilion Suspended in a Room I,” by Cristina Iglesias

    The Tate Modern had about 4.7 million visitors last year.

    Photographer: Jack Taylor/Getty Images

  16. Enjoying the View

    Enjoying the View

    A visitor pauses alongside views of St. Paul’s Cathedral across the river Thames.

    Source: Tate Photography