When the winner of this year’s Turner Prize is announced in a few days’ time there is every chance they will have studied at The Glasgow School of Art. Three of those on this year’s shortlist are graduates, and there is every optimism for the alumni of this independent art schoolthat has produced four winners in the past.
But it’s not just the world famous institute that isresponsible for the “Glasgow miracle”, asdecades of hard work by its artists, musicians and residents are also to thank.
Here’s a guide to where the artistic magic happens.
The Glasgow School of Art (GSA)
With its current incarnation on Renfrew Street designed by one of the UK’s most prominent architects, Charles Rennie Mackintosh (a former student), the School of Art was the centre of an artistic revolution in Glasgow that coincided with an economic boom in the late 19thCentury.But it’s not all about architecture and design as the The Mackintosh Building where the school is now based counts among its famous alumni Peter Capaldi, Robbie Coltrane and Bob Hardy from rockers Franz Ferdinand.
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
Reopened after an extensive period of renovation by the Queen, Kelvingrove sits on the River Kelvin and is notable for its collection of arms and armour, which helped attract more visitors in 2007 than Edinburgh Castle could muster. It’s the home of Spanish surrealist Salvador Dali’s best-known work, Christ of Saint John of the Cross.
Head to Royal Exchange Square and look for the statue of the Duke of Wellington with a traffic cone on his head as that’s where you’ll find the Gallery of Modern Art, which is currently hosting Generation (until November 28, 2015). This exhibition looks back at 25 years of art produced in Glasgow by some of its biggest names, in a variety of mediums. An installation which displays Turner Prize winner Douglas Gordon’s 1993 film 24 Hour Psycho is proving a hit – quite literally it involves Hitchcock’s classic Psycho slowed down to two frames per minute so that the film lasts exactly one day.
While the other three institutes celebrate the more mainstream modern arts, it’s at Transmission (namedropped by Glaswegian band Franz Ferdinand in hit single ‘Do You Want To’) where you will spot the real movers and shakers of this vibrant city. Started more than 30 years ago by a group of GSA graduates who wanted to celebrate everything ‘underground’, Transmission has grown into a hugely popular gallery/performance venue showcasing talent from around the world, and contributing to Glasgow’s continued status as one of the country’s centres for creation and culture.
For visitors arriving into Scotland’s second city by plane, collect your car hire from Glasgow International Airport before setting off on an adventure to explore this city’s great art scene.