Architecture Diaries

Glasgow Day 1

Wow! It’s not even lunchtime yet and I am completely in love with this city. I caught an early morning flight to Glasgow this morning, which meant that I was ready and raring to go and explore the city by 8am. I have just been on the city sightseeing bus tour and have realised that I am going to need a lot more than four days to really see this city. I think another two weeks should do it!

I came to Glasgow to see the work of Charles Rennie Mackintosh, (and of course to track down any of the 1001 buildings). I also had my eye on two other buildings but I hadn’t planned on doing much else. I am not sure if it’s a good or bad thing that I have wanted to get off the bus at nearly every stop to explore the city.

SEC Armadillo Building – Foster and Partners – 2000

Ok so this is one of those that I had my eye on, I’ve seen pictures of it and there’s just something about this shape, similar in my opinion to my favourite building the Sydney opera house, although my research has suggested that this was not the designer’s intention. The actual inspiration for the building’s shape is said to be interlocking ships hulls in reference to its surroundings and proximity to the river. I was not actually aware that this is a Norman Foster building. It is no wonder I was drawn to it as I am a big fan of Foster’s work.

Riverside Museum – Zaha Hadid – 2011

This was my second stop of the day, a must for any fan of contemporary architecture. This is only the second Hadid building that I have seen so I was very excited to see it and to go in and have a look around.

Stop three, my third and final stop of the day was not on the bus route. To avoid the very real possibility of my feet getting even colder and seizing up completely I got a taxi to The House of the Art Lover. This Building has the honour of being my first building and first proper experience of Rennie Mackintosh. I have only ever seen Mackintosh furniture and various pieces in museums over the years.

The experience was incredible and even quite emotional to be in the presence of such a building.

DSC04515The House For an Art Lover – Charles Rennie Mackintosh – 1996

The House for an Art Lover was designed in 1901 by Mackintosh as an entry for a competition for a German, modern design magazine. The competition was not won by Mackintosh, in fact he was disqualified for not producing the amount of drawings specified in the competition entry. The judges of the competition were however impressed with Mackintosh’s work and he received special recognition for his designs. The design of this building was not realised until 1989 when work was begun on The House for an Art Lover. The building was completed in 1996 by the architect Andy Macmillan and engineer Graham Roxburgh along with the help of many craftsmen and women, who used Mackintosh’s original drawings, to recreate his vision.


To follow this stunning exterior we have the majestic interiors. Please forgive me for repetition but I’m running out of adjectives to describe the beauty of this place.



By 3pm, after tea and cake in the lovely cafe I’m done. Off to check into my hotel and maybe have a little siesta. ZZZzzz

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