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The big turn-on – or turn-off?

Blog | By Nigel Summerley | Dec 11, 2017

The grand facade of Tate Britain has been decked out with Christmas lights, apparently ironically, in the tacky over-the-top Blackpool Illuminations style increasingly favoured in one-upmanship suburbia.

But it may be a case of too little, too late. The Tate ‘work of art’ installed by Alan Kane has nothing on a house next to Wandsworth Common (pictured below) which has been doing this sort of thing for years – although whether this example of south London tackiness is ironic or just plain tacky is difficult to fathom.

No doubt there are many more similar seasonal outbreaks of garish light shows all over the country. But do they leave those assailed by them filled with joy or with despair?

Whether it’s the Tate’s irony or the neighbours advertising their lack of taste, one might wonder: how much is the electricity bill? And wouldn’t it be better to scale down the number of light bulbs and give the surplus cash to Crisis at Christmas?