Author Archives: danielleduryea

Tate Swindon Final

Danielle Duryea 

This project proposes a Tate Merchandise production and storage center for the Tate Gallery in the Greenbridge Retail Park of Swindon. The Tate, more than most museum institutions, has spent a considerable investment on their branding and advertisement strategies. This project aims to offer a critique on the commercialization of art and museumification of their gift shops.

The Tate Gallery receives the least amount of funding (38%) from the Government Grant-in-Aid  program when compared to other major London based institutions such as the Royal Armories (82.5%), the V&A (60%), the National Gallery (78%), the British Museum (56.5%), and the National Portrait Gallery (43%). The shortcomings of government aid have resulted in a restructuring of the Tate towards a commodity driven business model. Tate Enterprises is a subsidiary of the Tate Gallery and oversees the publishing, shops, and catering divisions. While the division doesn’t generate the majority of the revenue for the Tate Gallery, the products generated develop brand recognition and repeat visits. Tate Swindon operates as an integral part of Tate Enterprises as it houses the production and storage of the gift shop. Additionally, the program of Tate Swindon integrates a public component of shopping to allow the consumption of Tate products to occur simultaneously with the production. The items produced at Tate Swindon range from large scale mass print reproductions to custom replications commissioned by artists. The diverse range from high culture to mass pop culture art is reflected in the reproductions on every scale.

The formal strategy for Tate Swindon samples the four Tate Galleries and combines them as an extrusion atop a generic big box. The ambition to sample the existing forms was driven by the Tate’s strategy of repeat logo and brand recognition. Instead of repeating the Tate Logo, Tate Swindon repeats the building forms and rearranges them to become a town of shopping above the production. The extrusion in one direction addressed an Urban to create flat “billboard” facades from the main street while the articulated facade addresses the public entry. The car enters the retail park and Tate Swindon on the corner, allowing both facades to be read in contrast to one another.  Co-opting the imagery of the Tate Galleries into a single  facade reduces the glorified image of the museum to a decorated storage shed. 

Midterm – Danielle Duryea


Underground Storage for the Tate and British Museum

Dean Hill House, Wiltshire,UK

1hr 20 minutes from Swindon

2 hrs from London

Former UK Ministry of Defense storage facilities- now house off-site storage underground for the Tate Galleries and the British Museum

The building is a  series of caverns carved  into the chalk hillside originally intended to hide the weapons for the Royal Naval Armaments Depot during WWII.

The Post-Consumer : “Gifts for the Soul”

I found an interesting article in The Guardian that describes the rise in revenue for Museum Shops (despite the recession) as a part of the “Post-Consumer” need for connecting culturally with the items you buy. The Guardian article also interviews, Peter Tullin founded the website “Culture Label” ( which combines more than 60 institutions and their gift shops as a way to capitalize on this market and on-line shopping.  The website even has a section where you can buy certain eligible, original art pieces from these institutions under their “Contemporary Art Loan” program.

Guardian article:

From the article:

I think the most beautiful thing about Britain is the museums are free,” says Lorenzo Zordan, a holidaying Italian at the V&A yesterday. That ethos had not stopped his wife buying some earrings in the V&A shop yesterday, a final memento of a two-week tour. “The shop is definitely an important part of the museum experience, but everyone looks much more interested in it than they did in the museum,” adds Zordan with a note of bemusement.

You too can afford original art or reproductions from any institution!

This makes me wonder if the Museum Shopping experience is any different from Amazon or any other shopping website…

Site 04: Greetings from Swindon

Greenbridge Retail and Leisure Park

by Danielle Duryea

This postcard imposes the Tate brand as just another retail store in the Greenbridge Retail and Leisure Park. Greenbridge promotes itself as an all inclusive shopping, dining, and leisure experience. Similarly, the Tate has transformed the museum experience into that of shopping, dining, and leisure.

From the Greenbridge Retail and Leisure Park website:

“From microwaves to movies… carpets to computers… fridges to footballs… you can find it all at Greenbridge Retail and Leisure Park.

Why not shop till you drop, watch the latest blockbuster movie, work out at the gym, try your luck at the bingo… or relax in one of our famous-name restaurants.

We can guarantee you a warm welcome and you will be pleasantly surprised by the range of what’s on offer.

We believe Greenbridge is the perfect place to combine shopping with leisure, and with more than 20 shops, restaurants and leisure facilities, we can offer much more than you thought.

Greenbridge is located near to Swindon town centre with excellent transport links and is close to the national motorway network.

The park is easily accessible by bus, train and car and has more than 2,000 free car parking spaces, plus the added advantage of on-site security.”

From the Tate website:

“You can buy a very special artist’s product as a treat for yourself or a friend, or choose a handful of favourite postcards from the hundreds available. We pride ourselves on our original selection of children’s books, which are stocked alongside children’s games, DVDs and T-shirts. The handcrafted jewellery is irresistible and customers return again and again for the art materials. This really is a shop that repays a visit in its own right.”

2A Sampling An Encounter- Tate Shop

5_tate store__colour

2A Sampling An Encounter – Beds + Signs

1 Entrance – Tate Britain

Tate Britain

by Danielle Duryea

This drawing combines the section of Sterling’s Clore Gallery at the Tate Britian, Tony Cragg’s sculpture Cumulus, and the blue cladding and utility objects of the New Haven Ikea Store.  These elements are combined into one section/elevation and reduced to a similar scale to be read as continuous and ambiguous building-scape with the Ikea elevation placed between the Tate Britain building and a fragment of the Cragg Sculpture acting as an adjacent building to the Ikea/Clore Gallery Curtain wall. The black figure of this drawing treats the sculpture and section as synonymous in the articulation of the space while the same pieces, when displayed within a box frame of the curtain wall as merchandise, become the focal point. This drawing redeploys the utility objects on the Ikea store, which are placed there for purely functional purposes, and repeats and scales them to become purely graphic objects.  We’ve talked about the overly articulated Sterling section as something that is not seen in experience of the museum, while in contrast, the vastness of the simple box is something incredibly visual and experienced.  I’m interested in this unexpected relationship and readings between these two types of form with respect to its intended purpose and the misuse of the objects (whether utility, art, or merchandise) when juxtaposed and placed in its unintended space.