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Design for Windyhill, Kilmacolm, perspective from north-east

Design for William Davidson. In the mid 1890s Mackintosh met William Davidson, a young Glasgow businessman, who commissioned him to design some furniture for his flat in Gladsmuir, his parents' house at Kilmacolm. About 1899 Davidson decided to build his own house, and Windyhill was the first of Mackintosh's private houses. It was completed in 1901 and still survives. Mackintosh designed the furniture for the hall, drawing room, schoolroom and principal bedroom, much of which survives in the GSA collection.

Mackintosh, Charles Rennie

Design for Windyhill, Kilmacolm, perspective from south-west

Design for William Davidson. In the mid 1890s Mackintosh met William Davidson, a young Glasgow businessman, who commissioned him to design some furniture for his flat in Gladsmuir, his parents' house at Kilmacolm. About 1899 Davidson decided to build his own house, and Windyhill was the first of Mackintosh's private houses. It was completed in 1901 and still survives. Mackintosh designed the furniture for the hall, drawing room, schoolroom and principal bedroom, much of which survives in the GSA collection.

Mackintosh, Charles Rennie

Mackintosh Art, Design and Architecture Collection

  • MC
  • Collection
  • c1891-2018

Items in The Glasgow School of Art's Mackintosh collection include: furniture, watercolours, drawings, architectural drawings, design drawings, sketchbooks, metalwork and photographs.

Mackintosh studied evening classes at the Glasgow School of Art between 1883-1894, winning numerous student prizes and competitions including the prestigious Alexander Thomson Travelling Studentship in 1890. Mackintosh and his contemporaries also produced four volumes of a publication called "The Magazine" during their time as students, which included examples of their writing and artworks. GSA Archives and Collections hold Mackintosh's Italian Sketchbook, as well as all four volumes of The Magazine, all of which can be browsed on our catalogue.

The majority of Mackintosh's three-dimensional work was created with the help of a small number of patrons within a short period of intense activity between 1896 and 1910. Francis Newbery was headmaster of The Glasgow School of Art during this time and was supportive of Mackintosh's ultimately successful bid to design a new art school building in 1896 - his most prestigious undertaking. For Miss Kate Cranston he designed a series of Glasgow tearoom interiors and for the businessmen William Davidson and Walter Blackie, he was commissioned to design large private houses, 'Windyhill' in Kilmacolm and 'The Hill House' in Helensburgh. In Europe, the originality of Mackintosh's style was quickly appreciated and in 1900 he was invited to participate at the 8th Vienna Secession.

In 1902 Mackintosh was invited to participate at the International Exhibition of Modern Decorative Art in Turin and later at exhibitions in Moscow and Berlin. Despite this success Mackintosh's work met with considerable indifference at home. Few private clients were sufficiently sympathetic to want his 'total design' of house and interior and he was incapable of compromise.

By 1914 Mackintosh had despaired of ever receiving true recognition in Glasgow and together with his wife Margaret Macdonald he moved, temporarily, to Walberswick on the Suffolk Coastline (in England), where he painted many fine flower studies in watercolour. In 1915 the Mackintoshes settled in London and for the next few years Mackintosh attempted to resume practice as an architect and designer. The designs he produced at this time for textiles, for the 'Dug-out' Tea Room in Glasgow and the dramatic interiors for 78 Derngate in Northampton, England show him working in a bold new style of decoration, using primary colours and geometric motifs.

In 1923 the Mackintoshes left London for the South of France, finally living in Port Vendres where Mackintosh gave up all thoughts of architecture and design and devoted himself entirely to painting landscapes. He died in London, of cancer, on 10 December 1928.

The majority of Mackintosh's design work, (including furniture and metalwork), architectural drawings, textile designs and watercolours are in the possession of three public collections - The Glasgow School of Art, Glasgow Museums, and the Hunterian Art Gallery at the University of Glasgow - although significant (individual) pieces can be found in museums across the UK and Europe, North America and Japan. However, some of Mackintosh's most important, symbolist watercolours from the early to mid-1890s are to be found in the collection of The Glasgow School of Art.

The Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections hold a large number of items by Mackintosh, giving us one of the largest collections of his work held in public ownership. The collection is one of 50 Recognised Collections of National Significance to Scotland. We continue to investigate new routes of engagement for the collection. For example, our Mac(k)cessibility project in conjunction with GSA’s School of Simulation and Visualisation explores digital display and loans of our Mackintosh furniture. Find out more about the Mac(k)cessibility project here.

Mackintosh, Charles Rennie

The George and Cordelia Oliver Archive

  • DC 066
  • Collection
  • c1897-2001

The George and Cordelia Oliver Archive consists of:

  • Newscuttings (featuring articles by Cordelia Oliver)
  • photographs and negatives by George Oliver
  • personal papers
  • examples of artwork by Cordelia and George Oliver, various publications
  • posters relating to cultural events in Glasgow and Scotland.

This material may contain sensitive information about individuals that is protected by the Data Protection Act. Until this material has been checked for sensitive information, it will not be available for researchers. Once this Data Protection work is complete the collection will be open for access, however any sensitive information will be closed and inaccessible for 75 years from the date of creation.

Oliver, Cordelia

Records of Gillespie, Kidd and Coia Architects

  • GKC
  • Collection
  • c1917-1987

The collection consists of job files, photographs, architectural drawings and plans for projects undertaken by the architectural firm of Gillespie, Kidd and Coia between c1933 and 1987. There are also general office files containing correspondence, account papers, ephemera and artefacts.

This material may contain sensitive information about individuals that is protected by the Data Protection Act. Until this material has been checked for sensitive information, it will not be available for researchers. Once this Data Protection work is complete the collection will be open for access, however any sensitive information will be closed and inaccessible for 75 years from the date of creation.

Gillespie, Kidd and Coia

'Space for the Mind': Design thesis journal and Technology journal

Digital copies of Design thesis journal and Technology journal. Artist statement: "This thesis argues that the city is ultimately and process, and not just aging artefact or relic. Conceptually, the architectural exploration is one that embraces the recognition of change through contemplation. By investigating the relationship of spaces to the mind, can a place be designed to evoke this sense of reflection?"

Makwana, Suraj

Papers of the Anderson family, students at The Glasgow School of Art, Scotland

  • DC 022
  • Collection
  • 1860-1969

The Anderson family archive includes material of 5 of its members, namely the sisters Violet Meikle (1873-?), Daisy Agnes McGlashan (1879-1968), Daisy's husband William Smith Anderson (1877-1929) and their two daughters Daisy M Anderson (1910-1996) and Agnes Violet Neish (nee Anderson) (c1912-2005).

The Anderson Family archive contains family papers, sketchbooks, photographs and letters from 1860 to 1969.

The archive contains a number of sketchbooks kept by family members. Those belonging to the women contain flower drawings and schemes for ornamentation whilst William Anderson's books reflect his life as a commercial traveller for an ironfounder's firm and contain scenes from London and elsewhere, as well as technical drawings and plans. As many of the members of Daisy Anderson's family attended the Glasgow School of Art, the collection throws light on the work of the School from the 1880s-1950s.

Additionally the collection includes correspondence, newscuttings and photographs. Please note that this material is not yet fully catalogued and therefore some items may not be accessible to researchers.

Some of this material was damaged in the fire in GSA's Mackintosh Building on 23rd May 2014, and has since undergone conservation.

Anderson, Agnes Violet

H A Wheeler volumes of illustrated essays

  • DC 118
  • Collection
  • c1940s

3 volumes, each consisting of text, drawings and photographs relating to the subject matter.

  1. The Fair City. A review of the 18th and 19th century architecture of Perth and district. Dated 1948 – Rowand Anderson student.
  2. A study of the Cantilever Principle in Architectural Design. Signed and dated 4th October 1949.
  3. Contemporary Church Design. (Not signed or dated).

Wheeler, Sir Harry Anthony

Papers of Sidney Wesley Birnage

  • DC 100
  • Collection
  • c1930s

This collection includes:

  • 1 x brochure for Houses by Lanarkshire Builders Ltd (S. W. Birnage as consultant architect), not dated [post war]
  • 1 x thesis ‘The Foreign Influence on Scottish Architecture of the 16th and 17th centuries’, May 1937
  • 1 x bound volume of student notes

Please note that this material is not yet fully catalogued and therefore some items may not be accessible to researchers.

Sidney Wesley Birnage

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