Glasgow School (1870-1910)

The Glasgow School of Art became one of the United Kingdom’s institutions for the study of fine art. Imortant artists were The Four, the Glasgow Girls and the Glasgow Boys.

Glasgow School of Art, designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh
Glasgow School of Art, designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

Image source: https://www.pinterest.it/pin/504051383278523466/

The Four

The group known as “The Four” included Charles Rennie Mackintosh, James Herbert MacNair, and the sisters, Margaret Macdonald and Frances Macdonald. They played a key role in the definition of this style. The artists got acquainted as young students of the Glasgow School of Art. Mackintosh and MacNair started as apprentice architects for Honeyman and Keppie, and the studied at Glasgow School of Art. They built up a creative alliance to produce disruptive and controversial designs.


Glasgow School Furniture
Glasgow School Furniture

Image source: https://medium.com/ord-croft-baden-haus/gsa-2018-rebuild-funding-cbc33ff36bfd

  • Charles Rennie Mackintosh was a Scottish designer, famous in Great Britain. His most relevant projects were the Glasgow School of Art, considered the first example of Art Nouveau architecture in Great Britain;  along with other projects: “Haus eines Kunstfreundes”, the Willow Tea Rooms,  and Scotland Street School.
 Willow Tea Rooms, Glasgow (1904).
Willow Tea Rooms, Glasgow (1904).

Image source: https://www.architectsjournal.co.uk/news/simpson-and-browns-willow-tearooms-restoration-vision-revealed/10009963.article

Charles Rennie Mackintosh, portrait.
Charles Rennie Mackintosh, portrait.

Image source: https://www.crmsociety.com/about-mackintosh/the-four/the-four-1/

  • Margaret and Frances MacDonald were good at the use of several media such as watercolour, metalwork, embroidery and textiles. Frances, Margaret’s sister, started an ambitious venture with her, opening the MacDonald Sisters Studio in the 1890s. Their work’s inspiration came from Celtic symbols and folklore. Frances MacDonald’s painting came out as her intimate understanding of the landscape.
Margeret MacDonald, portrait.
Margeret MacDonald, portrait.

Image source: https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/185984659597097723/

Frances MacDonald, portrait.
Frances MacDonald, portrait.

Image source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frances_MacDonald

  • James Herbert MacNair was a talented designer. He gave an important contribution in the early 1890s to develope Mackintosh’s creative imagination His paintings and furnishings designs were among some of the most most innovative of the Glasgow Style of the 1890s.
James Herbert Macnair Folding chair, 1890
James Herbert Macnair Folding chair, 1890.

Image source: http://www.artnet.com/artists/james-herbert-macnair/folding-chair-73HTyvniAq-UYwIjeKqN1A2

James Herbert Macanair, portrait.

Image source: https://www.pinterest.cl/pin/509962357799564550/

The Glasgow Girls

The Goose Girl by Bessie MacNicol, 1898
The Goose Girl by Bessie MacNicol, 1898

Glasgow Girls is the name used for a group of female artists that included Margaret and Frances MacDonald, Jessie M. King, Bessie MacNicol, Norah Neilson Gray, and many others. The name “Glasgow Girls” emerged much later. In the 1960s attention was given to the art of the city’s women creating a balance to the plentiful discussion of the Glasgow Boys.

Glasgow Boys

The Glasgow Boys had passion for realism and naturalism. They are the starting point for modernism in Scottish painting. They were powerfully influenced by the realism of Dutch and French art, especially the Naturalist paintings of Jules Bastien-Lepage, and the painter James McNeill Whistler obsessed with tonal harmony. Their subjects usually dealt with rural, prosaic themes from Glasgow life in general. Their colorful paintings tried to depict aspects of the character of Scotland.

James Guthrie, A Hinds Daughter.
James Guthrie, A Hinds Daughter.

Image source: https://theartsdesk.com/node/2485/view

Info source: https://www.artlyst.com/news/glasgow-school-of-art-a-burnt-out-toxic-culture-clare-henry/

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