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Tate Modern and regeneration

Posted by lostincci on November 29, 2010

Andy has a new publication in the journal City, Culture and Society (Vol 1.2: 79-87) that looks at the role of Tate Modern in urban regeneration. Helpfully the title of the article is “Tate Modern: Pushing the limits of regeneration”. This paper was co-written with two PhD students based in the Cities Programme at LSE, the whole special issue of the journal is concerned with aspects of regeneration in London in the last 20 years. Andy’s co-authors were Corinna Dean and Caroline Donnellan.

The abstract of the paper summarises its purpose as “question[ing] the conventional limits of regeneration and highlight[ing] the limited range of approaches, especially in relation to cultural institutions and their multiplicity of audiences, and the fact that different policies evoke, or construct, various ‘publics’, ‘visitors’ and ‘audiences’. The question of who gains and loses is given an extra twist when the object or instrument of regeneration is a cultural institution: a gallery or museum. To this end we identify the manifest tensions between the instrumentalisation of museums and galleries, and the potential to undermine their core purpose. We draw upon a second literature of museology to provide contrasting notions of audience and inclusion since such analyses sensitize the debate regarding audience and regeneration and will illustrate these issues by reference to Tate Modern in London.”

Andy hopes that this will continue the critical dialogue of policy makers concerned with museum practice and management and the instrumental desires of urban regeneration policy makers that use museums to achieve their ends (they hope). Of course, CMCI is very happy that it has such strong links with Tate Modern through the two optional courses offered jointly with Tate Modern on the MA Cultural and Creative Industries programme. This is another example of the critical knowledge transfer that academic and public institutions can engage with. A copy of the article can be accessed here.


The picture shows an example of ‘visitor interaction’ from Shibboleth by D. Salcedo, in the Tate Modern Turbine Hall, 2007 (thanks to Corinna for the photo).

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