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Effusive praise for Tate leads to disappointment

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It must have taken considerable courage for Peter Hall of Sansome Hall Architects to write as he did in your letters column (Letters, AJ 17/24.8.00). I too visited Tate Modern recently, expecting to be thoroughly excited, particularly by the building, but came away with a great sense of disappointment!

I've examined my motives in writing this, but it is not just sour grapes. From various articles, I had understood that the gallery spaces and lighting were variable, but my wife and I found the exhibits poorly lit and the galleries poorly ventilated. Herzog & de Meuron appears to have done very little with the grand space of the turbine hall, and although I did not see Jed Perl's full article in the Telegraph - a comment from which was reproduced on your news page (AJ 17/24.8.00) - I can only concur with his view that the architect seems uninterested in guiding visitors upstairs! Do architects have a predisposition to giving each other undeserved - and I use the word guardedly - accolades?

Joe Hayward, Stanmore, Middlesex

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