Friday, August 26

Leighan’s Top 5 Galleries in Glasgow with Pure/Dead/Brilliant

Hello, my name is Leighan and I’m the writer of Pure/Dead/Brilliant. Today I’m here to tell you about one of my favourite topics - the Glasgow art scene.

Glasgow is renowned for its art history and producing some of the best talent in the industry. It also plays host to, in high opinion, some of the best galleries in Scotland. I’ve decided to pick my top five and show you why art lovers and visitors alike should take a peek..

The Lighthouse

The Lighthouse can be found on Mitchell Lane in the City centre. Designed by Rennie Mackintosh and opened in 1895 the building lay desolate until a project was put forward and funded in 1999. it has been showcasing phenomenal artists and been a highlight of tourists visits ever since. Following a fantastic renovation The Lighthouse boasts a bright, light space where you can enjoy its exhibits over several floors. Not only does it have galleries but also a gift shop dedicated to Mackintosh pieces and of course the infamous tower with magnificent views over the city. The observation deck holds information for you to learn a little more about the cities architecture while you enjoy the view, examples of which can be found all over Glasgow so one tip I would have to give when visiting is simply >Look up!

Lighthouse observation deck at the top of the tower
With easy access via lifts, elevators and stairs The Lighthouse allows everyone to take in the sights and exhibits and aside from the occasional ticketed exhibit (recently there was a very colourful Paul Smith exhibit!) entrance is FREE.

For more details visit thelighthouse


No visit to Glasgow is complete without a walk around the Merchant City which also happens to be the home of one of my favourite galleries -Glasgow’s Gallery of Modern Art!

The GoMa displays a wide range of thought provoking work highlighting issues of sexuality, gender, religious, politics…well anything goes really! Being a family friendly gallery exhibits do have warnings prior to entering the galleries. One of the great things about the GoMa is that its exhibits are ever changing allowing the exposure of loads of artists throughout the year. Past artists include David Shrigley, Cosima Von Bonin, Ellie Harrison and Andy Warhol.

Outside entrance
The building itself is beautiful with the inside spacious and bright holding four galleries bursting with exhibits as well as a gift shop that’s popular with tourists and weegies alike. The staircase windows reveal fine stained glass designs and downstairs there’s a cafe and adjoining library. Outside is also popular with large pillars and steps for people to rest and take a photo or two of the popular Duke of Wellington statue complete with traffic cone! The mirrored glass on the outside entrance of the building was designed by Niki de Saint Phalle and is entitled ‘Tympanium’ and was first showcased on the galleries opening in 1996.

For more information please visit glasgowlife

Trongate 103

Again in Merchant City we find a gem as Trongate 103 is also attached toGlasgow Print Studio, Street Level Photography, Transmission and Cafe Cassochok.

The gallery itself has several hubs such as Project Ability which holds workshops for people living with mental health issues. There is also theSharmanka Kinetic Theatre which is a magnificent show of choreography, tragedy and comedy performed by the theatres carved figures. There is often a variety of workshops throughout the gallery and its neighbouring galleries as well as ever changing exhibits.

Trongate 103 entrance
Trongate 103 calls itself a place to >see art, make art and to enjoy being creative’ and is a must see for gallery fans.

For more details visit peoplemakeglasgow


I couldn’t make a post about my best galleries without mentioning theGlasgow School of Art. Not only is it one of the most historic buildings in the city but its also home to the best Glasgow talent.

Glasgow School of Art
Why not book a tour with one of GSA’s tour guides? You know your guide will be passionate about the building because they’re either graduates or current students! Or explore yourself and visit the public galleries including the Mackintosh visitor centre. The school also has walking tours which you can book to really experience Glasgow and its design past. You’ll probably leave wanting to enroll yourself!

One of former students Peter Howson’s paintings
GSA’s building is said to be one of Mackintosh’s finest works and was established in 1845. Its Scotland’s only public self governing art school and its past students come from all creative backgrounds and include painterKen Currie, novelist (and muralist) Alisdair Gray, painter Peter Howson, playwright and poet Liz Lochhead as well as comic artist Frank Quietly to name just a few. The school has also taught Turner Prize nominees and winners. You can see why its held dear in the heart of Glasgow.

For more information visit gsa

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

Just as I was compelled to mention one historic building I really should tell you about another - Kelvingrove Art Gallery.

Situated in the west end of Glasgow along from Glasgow Uni andKelvingrove Park is an art gallery you might first assume is the wrong way round. The myth behind the gallery, designed by E.J Milner Allen and Sir John W. Simpson, is that it was built back to front which caused one of its architects to jump from one of its towers. This isn’t true and in fact the building was purposefully designed for the entrance to face the park.

Kelvingrove Art gallery and Museum
Once inside you’ll be swept away by the size of the place which is packed with historic paintings featuring Monet and Van Gogh. There is something for everyone there and the gallery does like to get its visitors involved whether its by the talks which are given all over the building or the interactive features to keep the kids interested and also letting us learn a great deal more about the exhibits which span from Ancient Egypt to Victorian times and the present day.

Dali’s 'Christ of Saint John of the Cross’
A highlight is Salvador Dali’s ’Christ of Saint John of the Cross’ which was given to the gallery by Dali himself. Presented in a carefully lit space of its own you will learn about the painting itself, Dali’s appreciation of Kelvingrove as well as sketches and letters. It has become an incredibly popular exhibit and I would definitely recommend.

There are also specialised exhibits downstairs which are ticketed events but the rest of the gallery and museum is free. There is also a gift shop, cafe and if you’re lucky to visit at the right time you may see the organist playing a mix of songs from the balcony. It really is a great atmosphere to soak up some culture (and fun of course) for art lovers families and tourists alike.

For more details visit glasgowlife

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1 comment:

  1. Some of my favourite haunts! Though I've never thought of booking a tour of GSA before - will definitely look into that. I have a tattoo of Charles Rennie Mackintosh (his rose, not his face or anything!) so I should fit in ;-)