This Just In

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From World Architecture News:
Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron have today revealed plans for their £215 million iconic extension to the former power station on the south bank of the River Thames. The new 7,000 m² extension will be built on land to the south of the Tate Modern reclaimed from EDF energy networks. A new entrance and piazza to the 4 million visitor/year venue will allow north-south pedestrian passage through the complex. Ten new galleries will be provided in the 10 stories above ground and a performing space will be created within the former oil tanks, once used to feed the power station located below ground. The Mayor of London today pledged £7 million pounds towards the project through the London Development Agency. Completion is scheduled for 2012.
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Kinda makes Steven Holl's addition to the Nelson-Atkins look sensitive.

More at Google News.

Update: The image below and more, with commentary by Hugh Pearman, at Gabion.

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Update 07.26: The Tate's official site on the addition is Transforming Tate Modern, "an opportunity for you to see how the project is developing and how Tate is responding to local people's views."

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On Tate's page is the view above, which better illustrates the extension's siting and its view from across the Thames, less imposing than other renderings.


  1. bp seez:

    i don't know man. i have always applauded H&DeM but i agree. i think that they are now being baroque for the sake of it and not for any sort of true expression or relationship.

    suffering from 'big' dawg' syndrome if you ask me. totally dissapointed!

  2. I'm not sure that I think it is wholly insensitive, as Tate Modern is quite a stark industrial building to begin with.

    In some ways it reminds me of Rachel Whiteread's recent installation (that may just be due to currency though).

    That, or a game of Jenga.

    I'm intrigued to know the material - it looks like glass on the picture on the left.

  3. At first glance it's like they took SANAA's New Museum and took it to the next level, stacking and skewing boxes at whim. It's like a glass mountain or a reassemblage of the glass bars they inserted into the existing building's grand space and roof.

    I'm not sure yet I understand what's going on with this addition, though, especially from the inside, as visual information is non-existent. The way it meets the old industrial building and then breaks free and rises from it is interesting, I'm just not sure this is the best way to do it.

  4. looks like Marcel Duchamp's Nude Descending a Staircase

  5. creepy

    living in barcelona i've seen H&DEM at their very worst. believe me, they can be quite bad.

    what is it with these jenga-style poorly baked towerish thingys (read new new museum...)

  6. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  7. sh*t
    i didn't read the prior comments
    now i look like a total dork
    like a mexican parrot

    i have a new "architecture" blog
    in case you wanna drop by...


  8. Just another hideous example of what H.H.Richardson called the First Rule of Architecture- Get the job!
    With that monstrosity looming behind it, the simple elegance of the former power station will be ruined especially from other side of the river. Up close, they will probably just clash.

  9. Is H&DeM going Gehry?

    For some odd reason, I like the design. This cubist cat-in-the-bag is an obvious play of contrasts against the more fine boned Tate Modern next to it.

    It is almost 21st century "event" architecture, simply trying to build the seemingly impossible. Not unlike the pyramids...

    There are questions of context, but I suppose the truth is that our art museums are replacing the place of churches of the 1800's. Unfortunately, it represents the priority of of human ideas and humanism over God in popular culture.

    Meanwhile our churches become more pedestrian...

  10. Typical "Star" architect bull crap. The emporor has no clothes. Please stop foisting this junk on the public while proclaiming how brilliant and creative you are. KMA.

  11. looks like a cubist interpretation of the de Young tower...

  12. Provided they can climate-control the thing - which looks rather difficult - and that the construction is executed well, with the right materials, I think it's actually kind of a cool design. Of course, that's not having seen any interior views, and having no sense of how it will actually look on site, once built. Foster's GLA, for instance, doesn't look half-bad in mock-ups but its actual physical presence is cheap, disappointing, already weathered, and strangely dimunitive, like a hunchback in some Hammer horror film.

    In any case, the crystalline, almost cinematic quality of this thing seems interesting to me. I just have a feeling it won't work, aesthetically, in the British climate, and that it will look cheap from the instant it opens.

  13. IMHO, this isn't architecture - it's a classic iConic eye-con in the making.
    It'll be interesting to follow it through from initial media stories & images & "enigmatic metaphors" (as Jencks calls them), through its nickname (any bets? "The Zigurrat" seems favourite at the mo), its funding & planning process to actual built reality.

    Modern art is more about process than product nowadays - is that what's maybe happening here? While Modern Art tries to become more like architecture, do we have a case of architecture trying to become more like art?

  14. Sorry - Jencks says "enigmatic signifiers", not "enigmatic metaphors".


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