Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s work is, in many ways, timeless, with his clean lines and expert use of shape and colour. The new exhibition at the Walker Art Gallery weaves through Mackintosh’s life and work, at each point giving the context of both his personal life and works that may have inspired him. This presentation allows both the unversed and the avid follower to fully appreciate the Glasgow Style.
Mackintosh’s talents clearly shine in the variety of mediums he used to express himself, from the fittings he made for the Ingram Tearooms to his architectural drawings and later paintings. Particularly interesting to see was his submission for the competition to design the Anglican cathedral in Liverpool. The layout of the exhibition allows you to immerse yourself in how Mackintosh would have wanted his work, particularly the furniture, to be experienced. Much of his work was designed for entire houses and cafes – this is art to be used not just to look at.
The work of the rest of the Glasgow Style is also displayed, with each member taking a different approach to the Art Nouveau style. The embroidery work of Jessie Newbery and others is particularly stunning and striking to see displayed alongside more traditional forms of art.
This exhibition is well worth a visit, allowing you to see some of Mackintosh and the Glasgow Style’s most beautiful work for the first time outside of Scotland.
Charles Rennie Mackintosh: Making the Glasgow Style is on display at the Walker Gallery until 26 August 2019. Book tickets here.
Featured image credit: Poster for The Scottish Musical Review; May edition, 1896 (edited), Charles Rennie Mackintosh, © CSGCIC Glasgow Museums