The Tate: A Centenary History by Frances Spalding
The Tate Gallery opened in 1897 and came into being as a result of growing recognition of an urgent need for a national gallery of British art. In 1889 the initiative was taken by Henry Tate, a collector of British art whose fortune was made from refining sugar. Tate offered the nation his collection and a building to house it. After much debate this offer was accepted and the Tate Gallery was built on the site of the former Millbank prison. Officially it was called the National Gallery of British Art, but soon became known to everyone as the Tate. This comprehensive account of the Tate traces its growth over the last 100 years. Works of art, building schemes, Government, public and private sector funding are some of the many factors that shape the Tate's shifting nexus of relationships as it grows and expands. The Tate now has galleries in Liverpool and St Ives, and a Tate Gallery of Modern Art is being created at Bankside.