Brit-art bad girl Tracey Emin featured largely in the publicity
surrounding the glossy rebranding of the Tate Gallery on Millbank as
Few commentators picked up on the possibly deliberate pun in the name,
and only one mentioned the new ’softer’ logo. Sponsors such as the
Guardian, BP, and Sunlife and Provincial Holdings will probably feel
aggrieved at their single mentions each.
Journalists were, however, unanimous in their praise for the new themed
rooms and the juxtaposition of historical and contemporary art. Some
questioned whether Britishness was an appropriate theme for a gallery
that includes works by Canaletto. Others, notably James Davison in the
Guardian Review, thought Hogarth’s The Gate of Calais, central to the
first exhibition, smacked of ’obnoxious propaganda’.
The Guardian enthused that Tate Britain, ’wants to surf the wave of
enthusiasm for new British art’, but like all the broadsheets covering
the event, saw it as an appetiser before the main course, the opening of
Tate Modern on Bankside in May.
Analysis and commentary by Echo Research.
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