I had a busman’s day out on Saturday at the Tate Britain. I’m not a big traditional art fan but I do love old buildings, so it was great to go down into the crypt to see how the building has developed and changed over the years, from inception through the war and bombings to present day modifications.
Construction drawings and visualisations have changed a bit over the years and the level of detail on the old GA’s is really is really nice to see. I can’t imagine what a builder would say if you handed them these today!
Some good modern sections were on show as well. I started off on a drawing board, so know how long and painful some of these drawings are to create and how frustrating it is to change them! We try to teach our staff about symmetry and to keep drawing from the same viewpoint to ensure the reader does not have to work out what’s changed, or so changes can be instantly noted. So it’s always good to see these principles have a history.
A great piece of text was also found when works were undertaken by one of the plasters. Unfortunately, the ‘Plasterers Association’ no longer exists and the fibrous plastering skills that are left today are only practised by a very small number of companies (some of which we have had the pleasure of using to recreate a number of original mouldings on some of our listed projects).
In the Main Hall were two of my favourite things: a very cool piece of art and lighting design, this by Cerith Wyn Evans ‘ Forms in Space…by Light (in Time) 2017, a chaotic piece of neon work which as you viewed it more the more repetition I saw; not one to fit in your house unless you are a multi-millionaire, but definitely one to take inspiration from.
If you’re in London, all of the Tate Museums are free and always have something to look at and think about even if it’s just the building.
If you want to know more about our listed works or lighting design do get in touchJohn is a Chartered Architectural Technologist, Building Services Engineer and Low Carbon Consultant.