Tate Modern has ensured another decade of popular large-scale installations in its Turbine Hall – which has hosted work from Ai Weiwei’s porcelain sunflower seeds to Olafur Eliasson’s giant sun – after signing its “largest and longest” sponsorship deal.
South Korean car group Hyundai Motor Company is to back the “iconic” hall until 2025 in a deal understood to be worth more than £5m.
Sir Nicholas Serota, director of Tate, the world’s most popular modern art gallery, said: “It is a landmark deal. It is lasting for a decade, it’s at a high level and it’s international.”
Such long-term up-front sponsorship deals were “unusual”, Sir Nicholas added, with companies usually signing up to support art institutions for three to five years. Culture secretary Maria Miller said yesterday: “Private sector support for the arts is absolutely vital for generating a sustainable, mixed economy for our cultural organisations. There are few that have done more than the Tate to get this right. I applaud all their efforts.”
See some of the installations that have marked the Turbine Hall over the years
Big ideas: Stars of Turbine Hall
Big ideas: Stars of Turbine Hall
1/8 The Turbine Hall in 2000
The empty turbine hall, pictured a month before the building's opening in May 2000. The space, 1521 metres long and five storeys high, originally housed the turbines of Bankside power station. Its designer, Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, also designed Battersea power station and the Cambridge University Library, as well as the formerly ubiquitous red telephone box
2/8 Louise Bourgeois in 2000
The first of the Tate Modern's Turbine Hall commissions went to Paris born Louise Bourgeois for three steel towers, entitled 'I Do, I Undo and I Redo'. It was unveiled in May 2000. Visitors were able to climb staircases to platorms on each of the towers
3/8 Olafur Eliasson in 2003
A group of protestors arranged themselves to spell 'Bush Go Home' in the Turbine Hall of the Tate Modern art gallery in 2003 in the middle of Olafur Eliasson's exhibition 'The Weather Project'
4/8 Carsten Holler in 2006
Visitors slide down artist Carsten Holler's installation, 'Test Site', in October 2006. For his installation, Holler created a series of slides which went from upper levels of the Tate Modern building into the Turbine Hall floor
5/8 Doris Salcedo in 2007
Colombian artist Doris Salcedo, widely recognised as one of the leading sculptors of her generation, unveiled 'Shibboleth' in October 2007. The work was comprised of a large crack in the ground stretching through the Turbine Hall - 'a subterranean chasm that stretches the length of the space.'
6/8 Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster in 2008
French artist Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster's Turbine Hall installation was unveiled in October 2008. The exhibition explored the notion of shelter, inspired by ideas of real and fictional situations when London has been under attack, by both war and the weather
CARL DE SOUZA/AFP/Getty Images
7/8 Ai Weiwei in 2010
Ai Weiwei covered the space with millions of porcelain seeds for his installation 'Sunflower Seeds' in 2010, though the dust meant the public were prevented from walking on the work
8/8 Tacita Dean in 2011
Tacita Dean nodded at Mondrian and illuminated the Turbine Hall's end wall in her installation, FILM, in 2011
Tate Modern is the most visited contemporary art gallery in the world, with 5.5 million people passing through its doors between 2012 and 2013. The Turbine Hall installations, then sponsored by Unilever, proved a big draw.
Memorable works include Eliasson’s The Weather Project, Doris Salcedo’s Shibboleth, which ran a huge crack through the floor, and the slides that Carsten Holler installed.
The very first commission was I Do, I Undo, I Redo by Louise Bourgeois which included new work and one of her existing spider sculptures, while the last, in 2012, was These Associations by Turner Prize nominee Tino Sehgal. The space has since been empty due to building work. Turbine Hall commissions will resume next year.
Big ideas: The stars of turbine hall
The Weather Project
One of the Turbine Hall’s most enduring installations was created by Olafur Eliasson and thousands flocked to lie beneath the giant sun.
Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster recreated sculptures from other artists. It referenced Louise Bourgeois’ first Turbine Hall installation with a giant version of her spider.
Ai Weiwei covered the space with millions of porcelain seeds though the dust meant the public were prevented from walking on the work.
Rachel Whiteread built a “landscape” using the plaster casts of differently-shaped old boxes.