"The most important work by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, an architect of international significance, Glasgow School of Art is held in the highest regard by architects and the public alike - it was rightly judged to be the best building of the past 175 years in a nationwide [RIBA] poll."
The macintosh building from the art school is on fire! @BBCNews @STVNews pic.twitter.com/YhoXolI27f[UPDATE: I've subsequently learned that the windows of the room on fire in the image above are the shallow bay windows of the iconic Macintosh Library which was constructed of wood and contained wooden furniture designed by Mackintosh. This article in the Telegraph confirms the damage and something of what happens next - Glasgow School of Art fire: 'Iconic' Mackintosh library destroyed]
— (@xdxxnx) May 23, 2014
Glasgow School of Art fire: fire damages Charles Rennie Mackintosh building - live updates http://t.co/zq9iD61mjM pic.twitter.com/E5LbaULcMA
— Guardian news (@guardiannews) May 23, 2014
|Image from BBC Scotland Video of the fire|
Glasgow School of Art: Fire crews battle to save building
Eyewitnesses said the fire appeared to have started when a projector exploded in the basement of the building on Renfrew Street in the city centre.Reports indicated the fire started in the basement and spread up through the west wing of the building to the roof - which as you can see from the screendump from a BBC video has been very severely damaged.
Eye witnesses feared that the whole west wing of the old building has been lost, including the irreplaceable Mackintosh library and the Hen Run, a famous corridor running along the roof which linked the west and east wing.
First building 1899, second Building 1909
Architect: Charles Rennie Mackintosh
Plus the fire service has subsequently announced what has been saved.
"With the incident under control indications are the firefighters' efforts have ensured more than 90% of the structure is viable and protected up to 70% of the contents - including many students' work."What I do know from fires is that what isn't destroyed by fire can easily be damaged beyond repair by the amounts of water required to put out a very fierce fire as this one obviously was.
It remains to be seen what has survived and what will need reinstatement. Surely there can't be any question but that this Grade A Listed building must be reinstated?
This is the page providing updates for the students and staff - which I am sure will also be of interest to all Glasgow Art School Alumni and those who were fans of the building
Besides being a wonderful building, this is also an excellent School of Art. Three of the current four nominees for the Turner Prize 2014 are graduates of the Glasgow School of Art as have been many in the past - see Graduates of Glasgow School of Art dominate Turner Prize nominees
Initially there were fears that all the work for final year degree shows - and assessment for their degrees - had been lost but the situation is now unclear. However a very reassuring message was sent to students
Students should not concern themselves about finishing work at this stage. Further information on assessment, degree show and graduation will be issued as soon as possible.To see something of what may have been lost or damaged I looked through the internet.
Let's hope as much of this as possible has been saved or can be reinstated
- This is the Guardian's 360 interactive panoramic of The Library at Glasgow School of Art
- BBC - Glasgow School of Art: The history of a Mackintosh masterpiece
- Herald Scotland - Glasgow School of Art: a history of the building and its famous students
- The Wayback Machine gives you access to the history of the Mackintosh Building (currently not available on the Glasgow School of Art website
- The Herald Magazine cover story: Robbie Coltrane on his art school days
- The Glasgow School of Art: Studio - Below is a film about the studios of students at the Glasgow School of Art - which enables you to see what it looks like on the other side of those very famous windows
The Glasgow School of Art: Studio from The Glasgow School of Art on Vimeo.
Another fire as degree shows assembled
The fire had strong echoes of the fire at the Pratt Institute in New York - again as graduates were assembling their final degree shows. This is what I wrote on this blog back in 2011.
The Pratt Institute in New York had a major fire in February 2011 in its main building which took nearly 170 firefighters to extinguish. It destroyed the studios of the Fine Art Seniors and their artwork for their senior projects which many will have spent months on. You can see pictures of the blaze on their Facebook page. Lots of people have rallied to the support of the students who lost their art supplies as well as their artwork.
Art supplies including brushes, canvases and other tools have been donated by a range of art supply stores, including Utrecht and Daler-Rowney, Pratt spokeswoman Jolene Travis said. More than 3,000 brushes have come in. The selection also includes personal contributions from faculty, Travis said, including some “used, very well-cared for and loved brushes tied in ribbons.”
Why not keep an eye on the information for students page, and if it appears they have sustained losses of kit and materials, why not leave a message on the Glasgow School of Art Facebook Page or send them a tweet if you'd like to send them supplies for the students?
Plus why not give them a 'like' or a 'follow' by way of support?