Alterations to the Lady Artists' Club

M288 Alterations to the Lady Artists' Club

Address: 5, Blythswood Square, Glasgow G2 4AD
Date: 1908
Client: Lady Artists Club
Authorship: Authorship category 1 (Mackintosh) (Mackintosh)

Colour photograph of front door

In 1908, Charles Rennie Mackintosh was commissioned by The Glasgow Lady Artists' Society to design a new entrance door and redecorate the hall and stairway for their club house in the elegant neo-classical terrace on the N. side of Blythswood Square, built in 1829 as part of the Blythswood New Town development. 1

Amid much controversy within the Club, Mackintosh produced a witty, neo-classical-influenced doorcase with deep, open pediment and fluted, square pilasters. 2 The tops of the pilasters are decorated with carved organic shapes set into the flutes, reminiscent of the carved and pierced decoration at Bridge of Allan Parish Church, Queen's Cross Church, and the library and board room of the Glasgow School of Art. The door and side lights are glazed in a grid pattern. Inside, the hall is panelled with dark-stained wood to picture-rail height. Tucked in under the stairs, the black, stained-wood telephone kiosk has panelling with gridded glazing above, and a deep skirting and prominent cornice in keeping with the neo-classical detailing of the front door. The doorcase and telephone kiosk have since been repeatedly repainted.

A report on the condition of the club house was produced as part of the Mackintosh Buildings Survey, led by the Charles Rennie Mackintosh Society and carried out between 2015 and 2016. 3

Notes:

1: For a full account, see: Roger Billcliffe, Charles Rennie Mackintosh: The Complete Furniture, Furniture Drawings and Interior Designs, Moffat, Dumfriesshire: Cameron & Hollis, 4th edn, 2009, p. 243; Elizabeth Williamson, Anne Riches and Malcolm Higgs, Buildings of Scotland: Glasgow, London: Penguin, 1990, pp. 215–16.

2: Glasgow, Mitchell Library (Glasgow Collection): The Glasgow Lady Artists' Club minutes, 891004/1. See in particular minutes dated 26 May, 8 September and 3 November 1908.

3: A copy of the report (MBS45) is held by the Charles Rennie Mackintosh Society, Mackintosh Queen's Cross, 870 Garscube Road, Glasgow G20 7EL. The Mackintosh Buildings Survey was funded by The Monument Trust.