Tate Modern Visitors Encroach Upon Neighbors’ Privacy

Could no one have anticipated this?

The new Tate Modern extension – The Switch House by Herzog & de Meuron. Photo Courtesy: Jim Linwood from London via Wikimedia Commons
The new Tate Modern extension – The Switch House by Herzog & de Meuron. Photo Courtesy: Jim Linwood from London via Wikimedia Commons.

Visitors to the new Herzog & de Meuron Tate Modern gallery extension, the Switch House, have been enjoying the 360-degree rooftop view since its recent opening—soaking up the sun, feeling the wind ruffle their hair, and… sneaking snapshots of the fancy apartments across the road.

Screenshot of Instagram post. Photo Courtesy: Kristian Vistrup Madsen.

Screenshot of Instagram post. Photo Courtesy: Kristian Vistrup Madsen.

“It’s terribly intrusive,” says one resident to the Daily Mail, “I bought this apartment because of the view but now I have to keep my blinds down whenever the platform is open, otherwise you get people waving at you.”

A Rogers Stirk Harbour-designed Neo Bankside apartment could set you back to the tune of £19 million ($25 million), and unsurprisingly, the apartments are replete with designer furniture, large paintings, plush rugs, and even a few rather large, professional-looking telescopes.

In response, the Tate has installed a sign on the terrace that reads, “Please respect our neighbors’ privacy.” Visitors have responded with collages of both photographs of the sign and of the apartments, too.

Otra cara de London

A photo posted by Karen Schachter (@karen_1605) on

Neo Bankside received their planning and development permission two years before the Tate Modern’s new extension did, but when the Tate’s plans for the rooftop deck were proposed, they were unanimously agreed upon by the council.

“Nobody had anticipated that people would literally be hanging over the balcony and taking photographs of their rooms and then posting them on the internet,” said local politician Adele Morris, involved in trying to resolve the issue.

“Now I think I would struggle to sell it,” said another resident.

“I could swear I spotted a Francis Bacon,” said a recent visitor to Tate’s Switch House, speaking to artnet News.


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