6a unveil designs for £30m ‘once in a generation’ refurbishment of Tate Liverpool

Architect He won the job A year ago, it defeated competing bids by Asif Khan Architects, Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, and Witherford Watson Mann Architects.

Tate Liverpool is the UK’s most visited modern art gallery outside of London, and the project has been described as a “once-in-a-generation renovation”.

The competition was launched to select a team to “reimagine and redevelop” Tate Liverpool’s galleries, offices and public spaces on the waterfront so that the satellite corporation can “better connect with the city and its communities” and “thriving over the next 30 years”.

Originally expected to be delivered for £25m and tentatively scheduled for completion in 2025, the landmark project comes more than three decades after the gallery opened inside the former 19th-century listed warehouse.

Key objectives include defining the new route and circulation, modernizing the behind-the-scenes service facilities, and providing an exhibition space that is “flexible, attractive, and capable of hosting people, art, and ideas in equal part.”

The Preliminary Renderings show how the team plans to create a new exhibition space on the ground floor level, allowing the artworks to be viewed from the quayside.

The new double-height galleries will pave the way for exhibitions of large-piece work, previously impossible to display at Tate Liverpool, as part of a series of new ‘dynamic and social spaces’ across the building.

Plans also include improving the environmental and thermal performance of the building through new services to replace fossil fuels with renewable energy sources.

According to Tate Liverpool, 6a’s architectural design will “sensitively reveal” more of the former Victorian warehouse. The organization added that key elements from the Stirling Welford scheme would be retained, including “a re-imagining of the façade and double barrel gallery doors”.

Source: 6a Architect

A cutaway from the plans of Tate Liverpool

Tate Liverpool manager Helen Legge said:[After] 35 years old, we want to do more to engage new audiences and reduce the fair’s impact on the environment.

Through this once-in-a-generation regeneration of Tate Liverpool, we will become an art museum fit for the 21st century, catering to the needs of artists and audiences, now and in the future while continuing to play our part in the continued evolution of the historic waterfront.

Stephanie MacDonald, founding director of 6a, said: “Tate Liverpool is a landmark project for reuse, and much of what we need now to reimagine the gallery is already there. Through exposure and openness, we can re-engage the powerful materiality and unique waterfront location of Jesse Hartley’s 1970s warehouse XIX century.

She added: “Stirling Wilford’s innovative entry of a gallery within the warehouse walls of the 1980s has been re-presented in a new public art hall and adapted its displays for universal public access and an improved low-energy environment.”

Source: 6a Architects

Tate Liverpool opened in 1988 and now receives around 700,000 visitors a year. In 2007, Manchester-based Arca Architects created a new foyer for the museum, while in 2015 the gallery café was upgraded by local architectural practice Emporium and artist Peter Blake.

Last month, studio Asif Khan and artist Theaster Gates revealed the first images of National Museums Liverpool’s (NML)-backed proposals to reimagine part of the adjacent docks between Royal Albert Dock and Mann Island.

It was Tate Liverpool OneML They each earned £10 million in the chancellorship 2021 Oct budget to advance their renovation projects. At the time, the government awarded a further £2m for a nearby ‘new Beatles attraction’, although details of this new complex have yet to be confirmed.

Source: Shutterstock

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