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William Blake Exhibition, Tate Britain

Date: September 2019

Requirements:

  • Exhibition works
  • Rebuild of 6 galleries
  • Creation of a representation of Blake's 1809 gallery
  • Interior design and decorating
  • Construction of plinths
  • Close coordination with Martin Myrone, Senior Curator, pre-1800 British Art, and Amy Concannon, Curator, British Art 1790-1850.

Tate Britain required competent and skilled contractors to work alongside thier curator to create 6 refurbished galleries to exhibit the William Blake's works. The build of a replica of the small domestic room in which Blake first exhibited his art was central to the exhibit, and required careful planning to meet the gallery's needs.

What did MC Designers do?

MC Designers have a long standing relationship with Tate Britain, and as with all MC Designer's projects planning ensured that the build of the exhibit could be undertaken within the given time. Meetings with the curators were undertaken and once their requirements had been determined, MC Designers created images, drawings, and a 3-D computer aided design so that the curators could see precisely how the exhibition would be experienced by their visitors.

Throughout the project, the team from MC Designers completed the:

  • Removal of walls to create space for exhibition (6 galleries combined),
  • Erection of gallery walls in line with the curators' specification,
  • Construction and finish of gallery's stand alone entrance wall with steel posts, mesh, ply and plasterboard,
  • Construction and finish of plinths,
  • Sourcing and finish of display cabinets,
  • Construction and finish of specialist display frames,
  • Installation of a fabric ceiling in a light locked corridor,
  • Reconstruction of Blake's 1809 domestic room that served as his first gallery,
  • Sourcing of Ogee skirting board and dado rail for domestic room,
  • Build of back lit sash windows in keeping with era,
  • Installation of flooring with reclaimed floor boards.
  • Creation of non-slip slope into domestic room to withstand traffic
  • Boards of slope aged and had brad marks added to match existing
  • Painting of wall to provide canvas for AV display
  • All internal decoration in line with curators' requirements

Results

The end result was high-quality refurbished galleries that enabled visitors to experience Blake's paintings and drawings at their very best, and experience Blake's first public showing as people did back in 1809.