Celebrate the 150th Anniversary of the birth of Charles Rennie Mackintosh in 2018 with a year long programme of special events in Glasgow!
Born in Glasgow on 7 June 1868, Charles Rennie Mackintosh went on to be regarded as one of the most creative figures of the 20th century and a leading figure in both the Scottish Arts and Crafts Movement and European Art Nouveau. As an architect, designer and artist, Mackintosh left a legacy of magnificent work and is considered one of the key figures of the Glasgow Style, leading to a fantastic collection of Mackintosh buildings, drawings and designs in the city.
This year, take the opportunity to explore it all at venues across Glasgow as well in nearby Helensburgh, Dundee's V&A Museum, and at 78 Derngate in Northampton.
Attractions and events in Glasgow
Charles Rennie Mackintosh: Making the Glasgow Style, Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum (30 March to 14 August, 2018)
Mackintosh's 150th anniversary year begins with a flourish courtesy of a major, new exhibition at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. Spanning the lifetime of Mackintosh, it presents his work in the context of Glasgow, his peers and contemporaries and how it contributed to creating the Glasgow Style.
Showcasing the very best of Mackintosh works held by the city, visitors will be able to view rare objects, many of which haven't been on display for more than 30 years. Around 250 objects will be on display, including stained glass, ceramics, mosaic, metalwork, furniture, stencilling, graphics, interiors and much more. Tickets are on sale now so don't miss this opportunity to see a once in a lifetime Mackintosh spectacular!
Mackintosh at the Willow, 215 Sauchiehall Street (from 7 June 2018)
Designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh in 1903, Miss Cranston’s original Willow Tea Rooms in their Sauchiehall Street location are now undergoing restoration by the Willow Tea Rooms Trust. Visitors can look forward to a new exhibition and visitor centre, celebrating the achievements of Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh and Miss Kate Cranston.
Opening on 7 June 2018 to coincide with Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s birthday, this world class cultural and heritage attraction is one not to miss during the year of celebrations!
Mackintosh House at The Hunterian, University of Glasgow
The Hunterian is home to an unrivalled collection of work by Charles Rennie Mackintosh and his wife, the artist Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh. Located on the University of Glasgow campus, The Hunterian features The Mackintosh House, a meticulous re-assembly of the principal interiors of their Glasgow home. This year, a new Mackintosh interpretation centre is set to open at The Mackintosh House in the summer of 2018, making it a must-see attraction even if you've visited before.
The Lighthouse in Mitchell Lane is a great starting place to learn about Mackintosh and his work with the Mackintosh Interpretation Centre providing informative timelines, models, photos and drawings detailing his life, work, and lasting legacy.
Amongst the centre’s special Mackintosh 150 programming will be an ongoing series of archive film footage exploring aspects of Mackintosh’s architecture and the city of Glasgow, through screening events and exhibitions as well as an installation in the water tower in partnership with Cryptic/Sonica.
‘All The Young Nudes’ meanwhile will take inspiration from the works of Mackintosh and Margaret Macdonald and deliver two exciting life drawing events with The Lighthouse, which will present vibrant, multimedia scenes with live music for attendees to sketch and develop their drawing skills.
Mackintosh Queen’s Cross
As the only church designed by Mackintosh, this stunning venue will be showing an exhibition of drawings from his travels in Italy and other activity including talks, dance, music, art, workshops, and walks. A major 'sculptural experience' will also take place within Mackintosh Queen's Cross - keep an eye out for more details!
The Glasgow School of Art
Mackintosh was at the cutting edge of art and design in the early years of the 20th century, and to explore how The Glasgow School of Art continues his ground-breaking legacy, a new exhibition is set to open in the School's Reid Corridor in October 2018.
Visitors can also enjoy daily 45 minute long ‘Mackintosh at the GSA’ tours, which depart year-round from the School’s visitor centre and are led by an award-winning team of students and graduates. Investigating the story of The Glasgow School of Art’s Mackintosh building and Mackintosh's journey from student to iconic architect, artist and designer, you'll uncover his world famous designs with exclusive access to GSA’s unique collection of original Mackintosh furniture.
Through the summer of 2018, 2.25 hour ‘Mackintosh’s Glasgow’ walking tours will return with new guides, delving deeper into the architectural history of Glasgow’s fascinating city centre. It's the perfect way to start an exploration of the city and its cultural heritage and to understand Mackintosh’s ideas, influences and relationships through the unique perspective of GSA’s knowledgeable student guides.
The Mackintosh building is undergoing the final stages of its restoration after the fire of 2014 and will re-open to its students and the public in 2019.
Steeped in culture and heritage, Glasgow Art Club on Bath Street has long been a meeting place for generations of the city’s most innovative and creative inhabitants. The Grade A-Listed Clubhouse is resplendent with historically significant interior features – many of which were designed by Mackintosh when he was only 25 years old! This includes the recently recreated Mackintosh Frieze - painted in 1893, the stencilled artwork was Mackintosh's first major public work and the centrepiece of the club's Gallery.
In 2018, Glasgow Art Club will operate free guided tours every Tuesday from the beginning of March until end of May and then again from the beginning of October until mid-December.
House for An Art Lover
House for an Art Lover was designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh in 1901 but was not built until 1989, using plans he submitted as part of a competition in German art magazine ‘Zeitschrift für Innendekoration’. Built to exceptional standards, the building houses a beautiful Main Hall, Dining Room, and a Music Room, which all form part of the unique atmosphere that you'll find in this amazing building.
This year, visitors to the building will be able to enjoy guided tours, alongside two new projects:
'May Day' by Rosie O'Grady reimagines how artist Margaret Macdonald is represented by remodelling her gesso panel 'The May Queen' as a crop circle. Programmed as part of Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art 2018. (20 April – 7 May 2018)
‘Sculpture for An Art Lover’ by Tom Allan imagines the kind of artworks that the owner of House for an Art Lover may have displayed, presenting a number of works that reference both Mackintosh and artistic styles from the first half of the 20th Century. (18 May – 23 July 2018).
Scotland Street School Museum
Scotland Street School Museum kicks off its Mackintosh 150 celebrations in March 2018 with “What I myself consider my own personal ideal” – a family orientated building tour exploring Mackintosh’s difficult relationship with the school board and the mysterious symbols he incorporated into his design.
The Mackintosh Festival, October 2018
Now in its seventh year, the annual Mackintosh Festival will take place throughout October 2018 across a range of venues across the city.
From walks, workshops and exhibitions to performances and talks, events are designed for all ages and will appeal to those who are new to Mackintosh, as well as established aficionados.
Look out for the full programme in August 2018, which will feature a range of events with free exhibitions and workshops, ticketed tours and sociable evenings with food and drink.
Charles Rennie Mackintosh and Glasgow Cathedral, Glasgow Cathedral (22 October – 3 November 2018)
Charles Rennie Mackintosh had a lifelong connection with Glasgow Cathedral. Born in nearby Townhead and growing up in Dennistoun, he sketched details of the Cathedral and its surroundings, and was also involved in redesigning the chancel, working with John Honeyman. To celebrate his 150th anniversary, the cathedral will host an exhibition of selected sketches and photographs, showing how Mackintosh used Glasgow Cathedral as the template for his submitted design for Liverpool Cathedral.
A house of beautiful contrast, Mackintosh's Hill House was built as his vision of a "home for the future" between 1902 and 1904, and is considered one of his greatest works. Planning is underway to construct a see-through enclosure to protect this treasure from further damage, with the box shelter providing visitors with an opportunity to see the building from a new perspective on the walkways to rooftop level.
The Mackintosh Club, Helensburgh
Designed in 1894 by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Mackintosh Club is Helensburgh's creative hub for Architecture, Art, Design and Music and will host a programme of exhibitions, workshops and food and drink events for 2018.
Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s Oak Room: V&A Dundee
Unseen for 50 years, Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s Oak Room is the largest of Miss Cranston’s Ingram Street Tearooms and will be conserved and installed as the centrepiece of the new V&A Dundee’s Scottish Design Galleries. The new museum opens to the public in the second half of 2018 and presents the perfect chance to see a rare piece of his work.
78 Derngate, Northampton
The only home in England to be designed and remodelled by Mackintosh, 78 Derngate in Northampton will also be taking part in the celebrations! 78 Derngate will feature a micro exhibition from January to March 2018, and a special ‘Flowers for Mackintosh’ event to be held in summer 2018 with much more events to come - keep an eye on their site for more details.