Tate Britain’s visitors will have to watch their step thanks to a new artwork.

Artist Anne Hardy has been inspired by “the rhythms of the Earth and the tides of the River Thames”.

She has placed “sculptural objects” down the steps of the grand building, designed to look like ammonites, plastic bottles, and torn, white fabric.

Tate Britain's Winter Commission
Tate Britain’s Winter Commission (Tate Britain/PA)

The Depth Of Darkness, The Return Of The Light is inspired by pagan descriptions of the winter solstice, the darkest moment of the year.

Visitors will also encounter tattered banners on the building’s facade, tangled lights, and a soundscape of rain, thunder, birds and insects.

Hardy told the PA news agency the work is about the “bigger rhythms of the world and the Earth”.

Asked what she would say to people who complain that it looks like rubbish has been left behind, she said: “It’s a proposition to think about the reality that we are in right now, in a different way.”

Visitors will still be able to get into the museum, she said, adding: “There’s a lot of other space on the steps.”

Tate Britain said light and sound has been choreographed “to give the impression that the building has become possessed”.

The gallery’s director, Alex Farquharson, said: “Anne Hardy has created something that is at once fantastically imaginative and urgently topical, reminding us not only of the changing seasons but also of the changing climate.”

Tate Britain’s Winter Commission will be on display from November 30 to January 26.