Tate Modern Gauguin exhibition poster
Tate Modern's Gauguin exhibition poster

‘Going Gaga for Gauguin’ was definitely one of the more memorable newspaper headlines in response to our exhibition. I’m always fascinated to see how critics condense what you have been working on for several years into one article. Its also very gratifying when they pick up on exactly what you’ve been trying to say about the artist, through the themes and selection of works. Adrian Searle in The Guardian talked about how the exhibition ‘rescues the artist from his reputation as the amoral, dissolute monster of trashy biopics, and gives us instead a Gauguin for our time…a Gauguin who could neither escape himself and his own myths - nor those that would emerge after death.’ Wow! We’ve had thousands of visitors to the exhibition since it opened on 28th September. If you’re one of those, do you think we got the ‘Maker of Myth’ message across, loud and clear? Let me know… And here are some of the reviews:

Adrian Searle in The Guardian
Richard Dorment in the Daily Telegraph
Charles Darwent in The Independent on Sunday 


Adrian Scott

I didn't find it easy to work out how to comment on the Gaugin exhibition - not being a Facebook or Twitter user however..... thought it was brilliant. Completely disagreed with the critic on Front Row who didn't like the historical contextualisation using artefacts / newspapers/ photographs etc. Rather a lot of schoolchildren which was yes a little challenging but on reflection really great - especially since I learnt a lot from their teacher's commentaries! Tate Modern you're doing a wonderful job - thank you!


Christine -

In case you'd appreciate the feedback, I've made some comments on the labelling in the Gauguin show in my blog.


If you read the whole of the post, you'll find I loved the show and have lots of nice things to say about it.

If however you haven't got time, and would like to go straight to my reservations, jump to the third paragraph below the image of "Nevermore".

Meanwhile, thanks for a wonderful experience.

susan kaye

I agree with the comments about the labelling and I take the point of trying to choose a quiet time to view the exhibition, however I come from Manchester and travel back the same day so am limited as to when I can visit. Could talks by the curator take account of visitors from the provinces and are guided tours out of the question?

E Horwood

Visited yesterday and very impressed by the wide range of exhibits and it was wonderful to see the originals of so many works familiar to us only from reproduction. However, I was disappointed with the presentation which did not fully succeed in getting its message through to me. Mixing together paintings from various times in Gauguin's life did not work for me. The labelling was completely inadequate in this regard. I wanted to know "Where was he when he painted this? Was it Martinique; or his first period in Tahiti; or was he in the Marquesas by then?" Surely this is relevant - for example, by the time he was in the Marquesas, he must have known he was fatally ill and this was affecting the subject matter in many of the works from this period. Grouping labels, rather than putting them alongside the exhibit meant that people were crowding these spots. Some pictures and other exhibits had no information at all other than current ownership. I agree it was annoying that visitors were taking so many photos - one lady got quite cross because people would not step aside to let her take a picture! Not being an i-pod user, I found the new system difficult to control and very sensitive - kept finding it jumping to things I did not want! Much prefer the previous system - but I suppose I'm just showing my age! In spite of all these niggles, I had a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon and would not have missed it for the world!

Debbie Gardiner

Thoroughly enjoyed the exhibition - I was not a huge Gauguin fan but changed my perspective after seeing his work in person. I loved the i-pod system, I don't have one but found it very easy to use. The commentary and curators contributions were excellent and aided my understanding and enjoyment. Keep up the good work, thank you!

Gillian Dalley

Enjoyed the exhibition - good to see the pictures for real and saw much more in them (both technically and subjectively)than in reproductions in books etc. Learnt a lot about Gauguin and his place in the contemporary European view of the 'exotic'. Was annoyed by one or two visitors taking photos of almost every picture, standing directly in front and blocking other people's view. No photography in future please! Labelling of individual pictures - too small - means visitors have to crowd in unnecessarily closely.

Philip Zamperini

This has been so wonderfully generous with people like you to grant openly what exactly a lot of folks would have sold for an ebook to earn some dough for their own end, principally given that you could have tried it if you ever decided.

Christian Schremp

Undeniably imagine that which you said. Your favourite justification seemed to be on the web the simplest thing to keep in mind of. I say to you, I certainly get irked whilst other people consider concerns that they plainly do not realize about. You controlled to hit the nail upon the highest and defined out the whole thing with no need side effect , people could take a signal. Will probably be back to get more. Thanks!