Monday, 10 December 2018

Christmas Lunch

Image result for christmas clip art
Christmas is the season for parties and one of the first is the Friends’ Christmas lunch in the restaurant at Kelvingrove. This year we had a full house-99 people! The food, as ever, was well prepared and well served, everyone was lucky in the raffle and the company was excellent.
Courtesy of Frances Dryburgh
Our thanks are due to Brian and his staff in the restaurant, to Catherine and her staff in the shops and to the Executive, particularly Joanne and Linda.

Tuesday, 27 November 2018

James Duncan- An Enlightened Victorian

Benmore House with James Duncan's Gallery: Andrew Watson's Collection

In November, we were delighted to welcome Dr Andrew Duncan to give a talk about James Duncan- An Enlightened Victorian.  James Duncan was a 19th Century sugar refiner, based in the West of Scotland, who was also an art collector and philanthropist. He owned Benmore Estate in Argyll and built a gallery there to house his substantial and important collection of paintings. Unfortunately circumstances conspired to necessitate the sale of most of these paintings in the 1880s and now many of these hang in galleries in the UK and USA.

Tuesday, 20 November 2018

Christmas Shopping Evening 2018

 On the 20th November, Friends enjoyed the annual Christmas Shopping Evening in Kelvingrove, courtesy of the Kelvingrove staff, cafe and the shop.
As well as our glass of fizz and mince pie we enjoyed a raffle, 25% off in the shop, a musical recital and a talk on the exhibition “Brushes with War”.  Some friends also toured the exhibition.  A busy night!
The music was provided by our Honorary member Dr Jim Hunter and Douglas Lawrence on the fiddle. Douglas was introduced as “the best fiddler in the country” and he certainly was!

Courtesy of Frances Dryburgh
The highlight of the evening came when Dr Hunter presented Chairman, Liz Dent, with a piece of music which he had composed specially for the Friends. It is a lovely tune which we enjoyed very much and hope to be able to play often at Friends’ events

I don’t think there are many Friends’ organisations which have their own theme tune!!

Liz Dent

Monday, 5 November 2018

William Hunter and the Anatomy of the Modern Museum

On the 5th November, some Friends were welcomed to the Hunterian   Art Gallery by Mungo Campbell, Deputy Director, for a tour of the current exhibition, William Hunter and the Anatomy of the Modern Museum.
This well presented exhibition celebrates the William Hunter Tercentenary and his unique and encyclopaedic collection, left to Glasgow University after his death. There is something for everyone here from paintings by 18th century masters to anatomical specimens.
We were grateful to Mungo Campbell for his excellent tour and for agreeing to repeat it on the 12th November because we had so many wishing to see it.
The exhibition is free of charge and runs until 6th January 2019.

Tuesday, 30 October 2018

Catalogue of Ship Models

Our October lecture was given by Emily Malcolm, Curator at Riverside Museum, on thecatalogue of ship models currently in preparation.The collection was established in the 1870s and has  ship models dating from the time of the Napoleonic wars to the present day. Many of us will have fond memories of displays of these models in Kelvingrove and in the Transport Museum  and they are now in the Riverside Museum and in Glasgow museums resource centre. Not only did we hear of the story of the models and of the original ships but also of the people who made them. They were skilled craftsmen.
There will be an opportunity to visit GMRC and see more models in February 2019.
                                          Ss Rangitane. © CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

Mount Stuart

Our autumn excursion took us to Mount Stuart on the Isle of Bute, the grand Victorian mansion of the 3rd Marquess of Bute.
After a slightly inauspicious start - our normal pick up point had to be changed due to filming in the centre of Glasgow - thirty Friends enjoyed a trip to Wemyss Bay and a sail across the water to Rothesay.
On arrival at Mount Stuart we split into two, one group having lunch whilst the other had a guided tour of the house.
The Marble Hall, built of Sicilian marble and alabaster and soaring to a height of eighty feet, is a magnificent if somewhat overpowering sight.
Our guide led us through the history of the house which mirrors the 3rd Marquess’s interests in astronomy and astrology, evident in many of the rooms and decoration.
Perhaps we could have done with more time to study the fine family portraits by Ramsay, Raeburn and an atypical one by Thomas Lawrence. 
Throughout the tour we came face to face with the art installation “The Power of Twelve” by Christine Borland which reflects the use of the house as a naval hospital during the first world war and some of us braved the sudden rain shower to visit part of the installation in the swimming pool in the garden. 
Time for a cuppa in Rothesay before boarding the ferry and back to Glasgow. A long day but well worth it, thanks to the organisation by Marion Maudsley and our helpful driver, Sean.

Wednesday, 17 October 2018

Childrens Art Competition

Every Autumn, we are delighted that the annual prize giving for the Children’s Art Competition takes place at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. The competition is open to children of nursery, primary and secondary school ages. Bronze, Silver and Gold medals are awarded in each category.  This year the judges were Frank Quitely, renowned comic artist, and Gillian Kyle, designer of Scottish branded houseware. Both commended the high standard of work they  had to judge.  Gold medallist  Emil Enslein-Timmerman was presented with the Robert Logan award and Gold medallist Hannah Leyden with the senior T J Honeymen award.
FoGM is proud to donate the medals and to support the evening reception.
To see the award winning pictures visit
Gold medal winner, Emil Enslein Timmermann

Gold medal winner, Hannah Leydon

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Brushes with War

The lecture in September was given by Dr Neil Ballantyne and was about the exhibition “Brushes with War” which is currently in Kelvingrove. The aim of the exhibition is to tell the story of the First World War through sketches and drawings made by ordinary soldiers. Most of these come from the collection of Joel Parkinson, director of the World War History and Art museum in Alliance , Ohio.
Rats’, by Gunner Mears (British Army) in 1916. 
Joel Parkinson, © WWHAM (World War History and Art Museum). 
His collection was started with a drawing showing his grandfather, a lieutenant in WW1. The exhibition moves from the initial optimism of 1914 to the stark reality of the trenches. It is well displayed and explained. After the talk, any who wished had the opportunity to go into the exhibition and were taken round by Dr Ballantyne.

Monday, 17 September 2018

Jupiter Artland

Courtesy of Frances Dryburgh

On the 17th September ,30 Friends travelled to Jupiter Artland, near Edinburgh. This is a sculpture park opened ten years ago in a wooded estate. As we wandered through the trees, we discovered contemporary sculptures by well known, and not so well known, artists. The sculptures vary from a giant shoe made from pots and pans, to a heart made from plastic pottery, to a shed built from dry stonewalls and even a giant spider’s web. A most striking cast iron sculpture is this giant rifle leaning on a tree, which our chairman is inspecting.
Thanks to Marion Maudsley for her careful arrangements on the day.

Friday, 31 August 2018

Razzle Dazzle

On Friday, 31st August, some Friends attended Riverside Museum for breakfast, bacon or egg rolls and tea and coffee. We were then addressed by Curator Neil Johnson-Symington on the subject of Dazzle painting. This was a wide  ranging talk about camouflage. Not only did we hear about dazzle painting on ships to foil the German submarines but also about the use of pattern and colour by animals, birds and butterflies to distract their predators.
Members will remember that we aided the purchase of the diaries of Thomas Cairns Livingstone. In these he recorded seeing the dazzle ships at anchor in the Clyde and we saw some of his sketches.
The display at Riverside is well worth a visit and we received a warm welcome from all staff.

Thursday, 5 July 2018

Provand’s Lordship and Provan Hall

A select group of Friends enjoyed a day exploring the history and
buildings of Provand's Lordship and Provan Hall. We had lunch at
St.Mungo's Museum of Religion and then went by bus to Easterhouse. The
two venues were linked in the Middle Ages for the Canon of
Provan/Barlanark, whose urban residence was Provand's Lordshop and
whose income came from the rural estate of Provan.

Margaret Anderson

Friday, 15 June 2018

Mackintosh and the Glasgow Style

On Friday 15th June, Friends visited the exhibition, MackIntosh and the Glasgow Style, in  Kelvingrove. This was a popular event since we have early entry to the exhibition and tea and a bacon roll. We were gratified that 112 people attended.
 © CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection
The exhibition covers not only works from MackIntosh and  “The Four” but also from embroiderers such as Anna MacBeth, artists such as Jessie M King and also from  stained-glass and furniture manufacturers.
Thanks are due to Brian and staff in the restaurant, to Catherine and staff in the shops and to Museum Staff for opening early!
It Is particularly sad that the day after such a delightful visit we had the tragic news of the fire at the Mackintosh Building at the Glasgow School of Art.
Part Seen ,Imagined part by Charles Rennie Mackintosh

Saturday, 2 June 2018

What we did in 2017-2018

Once again the Friends have had a busy year, approving quite a number of Grants towards the acquisitions of works of art and supporting other projects carried out by Glasgow Museums.

The Children’s Art Exhibition took place last October and once more the Friends were pleased to support this very worthwhile project. The total Grant was £2,080.00 which covered the cost of the cash prizes, engravings and the cost of the evening’s prize giving.

The Executive Committee was asked to award a Grant towards the purchase of the Jessie M King Book covers and illustrations. It was agreed that a Grant of up to £30,000 would be approved. £15,000 in this financial year, 2017/18 and the balance of £15,000 to be paid in the following year.

The Committee was pleased to approve a Grant of £4,000 towards the renovation of The Wardian Case which is now on display at the Gallery of Modern Art in Glasgow. Also on display in GoMA is an Exhibition called “Inner City” and a Grant of £9,000 was awarded in support of this installation.

A catalogue of the Ship Models in Glasgow Museums’ Collection is being published and the Executive agreed to grant up to £10,000 to match the cost involved.

It was agreed by the Committee to support the purchase of a frame for the Degas painting and £11,000 was awarded for this acquisition.

Altogether another successful year for the Friends in helping Glasgow Museums to purchase worthwhile works of art and installations.

Tuesday, 29 May 2018

Van Gogh

Alexander Reid by Van Gogh

 © CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection

The lecture in May was given by Dr Colin Bailey on the subject of Van Gogh. He traced Vincent’s life as he moved from the Low Countries to the United Kingdom and to the south of France at Arles. It was good to see so many of his paintings and to follow the development of his art. We appreciate Dr Bailey’s visits and look forward to his next talk.

Friday, 25 May 2018

Privacy Policy

Friends of Glasgow Museums (FoGM) is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy, and this policy sets out why we collect personal information, how we use it, how we keep it secure and the conditions under which we may disclose it to others.

From time to time we may change this Policy and this page will be amended accordingly.
Any questions regarding this Policy and our privacy practices should be sent by email or by writing to
Friends of Glasgow Museums
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
Argyle Street
G3 8AG
By telephone 0141 276 9558 (Mondays only or leave a voicemail message)
The Friends of Glasgow Museums (FoGM), is a Registered Charity No. SC 008995. Our aim is to cultivate interest in and to support the various activities promoted by Glasgow Museums.
The information which we hold is that which you supply on your application form. We collect your name, address, telephone, email address and bank details as appropriate.
We use your information to manage your membership and to send you communications, such as the newsletter and details of talks and events.
On occasion, we may send information about campaigns, appeals and other fundraising specifically for the benefit of Glasgow Museums.
We review our retention periods for personal information every two years. We are legally required to hold some types of information to fulfil our statutory obligations (for example the collection of Gift Aid requires we retain your signed agreement for six years). We will not sell or rent your information to third parties.
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We may pass your information to our third party service providers, agents, subcontractors or other associated organisations for  the purposes of completing tasks and providing services to you on our behalf (for example to send you the newsletter). However, when we use third party service providers, we disclose only the personal information that is necessary to deliver the service and we have a contract in place that requires them to keep your information secure and not to use it for their own direct marketing purposes. Please be reassured that we will not release your information to third parties beyond FoGM, unless we are required to do so by law.
Should you wish to terminate your membership, your contact details will be deleted if requested.
Security: We take precautions to protect the loss, misuse or alteration of your information.
When you give us personal information, it is stored on a database on a computer which is password-protected, and additional hardcopies are kept in a safe location.
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The accuracy of our information is important to us. If you change email address, or any other contact details, please let us know.
You have the right to ask for a copy of the information FoGM holds about you, without cost.
Review of this Policy
This policy is kept under regular review. This Policy was last updated in September 2018.

Thursday, 24 May 2018

Charles Rennie Mackintosh: Making The Glasgow Style

The May Queen, Margaret Macdonald
 © CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection
We were privileged to have Alison Brown, who curated the exhibition currently at Kelvingrove, as the speaker on 24th April. In a wide ranging talk, well illustrated by a selection of images from the exhibition, she covered not only the work of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and “The Four” but also put the work in context with the times in Glasgow and Europe. We look forward to the Friends  visit to the exhibition in June though I am sure that many will visit before then.

Ayrshire-land and sea

Dalgarven mill owner with the collection donated by Glasgow Museums

On an unbelievably beautiful day, some Friends travelled to Ayrshire. First stop was Dalgarven Mill, a Museum of Country Life and Costume. We were welcomed by owner Mr Fergusson who told us of the history of the mill and showed us the costumes, which had been donated. Of particular interest were Chinese vestments and also a donation of adult and baby clothes from Glasgow Museums.

Then we drove a short distance to the Scottish Maritime Museum at Irvine .In an enormous shed, were ships’ engines, boilers and even a full size lifeboat! In the yard out side is a Clyde Puffer. After lunch, we were taken inside a tenement house of the 1920s and then we walked along the pretty sea front to the MV Kyle , the oldest Clyde built vessel still afloat. We boarded her and saw the crew’s quarters.

The Maritime Museum
The success of the day was due to the friendliness and knowledge of all the guides and to the meticulous planning of Margaret Anderson.  Thanks to all.

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Visit to Inner city exhibition at GOMA

Mitch Miller with depictogram

On Thursday ,16th May a group of Friends visited the Exhibition Inner City . We were well looked after by the curator and guides, with coffee and biscuits in the 5th Floor studio and then tours of the exhibition with full explanations of the various exhibits. We were happy to meet Mitch Miller, one of the Associate  Artists for  2018 supported by FoGM. Details of this exhibition are already on the blog.

Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Merchant City Walk, Tuesday 20th March 2018

On an unusually mild and sunny March day, a group from FoGM did a walk 
from the Cathedral through the Merchant City.  In addition to seeing the 
historic sights and sites, such as the Tolbooth and Tron Kirk steeples, we 
saw the bright 2014 murals on the gable ends, and the pavement carvings 
at the Ramshorn and the City Halls.

Margaret Anderson

Visit to Cathedral 28th March 2018

      This was the second visit to Glasgow Cathedral for the Friends. Marian Maudsley introduced us to the Twentieth Century stained glass which had gradually replaced the Nineteenth Century glass. The sun was shining through the windows and showed them to perfection. There is so much to learn about them.

Anne Robertson walked us through the cathedral and ably covered 7 centuries of history. Tea and cake at Cathedral House was enjoyed by all.    

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Degas from the Burrell Collection, 27th March, 2018

We were delighted to hear from Vivien Hamilton about the exhibition at the National Gallery in London: Drawn in Colour, Degas from the Burrell Collection. She concentrated particularly on the frames for the paintings and on the choice of frame for Le Foyer De Danse, which was purchased with help from The Friends.  The book about the exhibition is very comprehensive and contains an essay by Vivien on Burrell.

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Friends Visit on 13th March 2018

A last minute change to the outing on 13th March took the group to the
Royal Highland Fusliers Museums at 518, Sauchiehall St. It is located in a building designed for
Thomas Annan by Honeyman, Keppie and Mackintosh in 1903 and includes
some CRM ironwork in the interior. Part of the building is also in one of the
original houses of Albany Place, the line of villas and terraces from the early
19th Century, still to be found between Renfrew and Sauchiehall Streets.
 The Museum of the Regiment, part of the Royal Regiment of Scotland since
2006, previously an amalgamation of the HLI and the Royal Scots Fusiliers
in 1959, houses a wide range of artefacts. These deal with all aspects of the life of
the regiment, campaigns fought in most parts of the world, including the
two World Wars and up to the 1st Gulf War, volunteer units, the life of
soldiers, medals, regimental silver, and so much more. It was really
fascinating, was much enjoyed and, as was commented, needs several
visits to take it all in.

Margaret Anderson

Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Natural History Societies and Museums in Glasgow

The recent talk by Richard Sutcliffe , the Research Manager of Natural History for Glasgow Museums , highlighted the close relationship between the numerous and varied natural history societies in Glasgow and the city's museums. This partnership , which has existed since the Victorian era , has been responsible for the many generous donations , both large and small ,which have been given by the societies' members to the museums , from the past to the present day ,making the Natural History acquisitions the largest part of Glasgow Museums collections. The significance , enthusiasm and influence of these natural history societies has lasted the test of time , with their membership , most importantly amongst the younger generation , increasing every year . 

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Inner City

On the 15th February, members of the FoGM executive attended Glasgow’s Gallery of Modern Art at the opening of Inner City, a group exhibition by Los Angeles-based artist Michael C McMillen and Glasgow-based artists Alberta Whittle and Mitch Miller.  
Inner City explores questions about the modern city, hidden communities and cultural identity. The exhibition takes its name from its centrepiece, a multimedia installation by Michael C McMillen – an amazingly detailed and atmospheric fictional depiction of a Los Angeles slum, which is on display for the first time in 15 years. Works by Alberta Whittle and Mitch Miller bring a local context to the dialogue. The exhibition is accompanied by a programme of related artist films.  
Born in Los Angeles, Michael C McMillen is a visual artist in the very widest sense. Often overlapping, his work involves sculpture, installation, printmaking and cultural anthropology. While building his reputation as an artist McMillen created props and special effects for the film industry, with his work featuring in movies including ‘Blade Runner’ and ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’. 
Reflecting the artist’s concerns about the lack of investment in infrastructure and social care in the United States in the 1970s, Inner City is a hyperreal model of an imagined rundown area of Los Angeles. The installation, first shown at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1978, allows viewers to become immersed in the nightscape of a derelict neighbourhood, altering their sense of personal scale as they look at the miniature dystopian world. It was purchased by Glasgow Museums in 1996.  
 © CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection
Local artist Mitch Miller’s publically engaged artworks also explore hidden or forgotten communities in an attempt to make them more discernible. As a social researcher he has created an art form he named dialectogram. Often pen and ink on mounted board, Miller’s work is the process that goes into the drawing after an extended period of time working with a community. It is the relationship and connections he develops that dictate the content of the drawing. Three dialectograms depicting a community flat in Edinburgh, Clydebank Library and a bar on the Red Road Housing Estate in Glasgow feature alongside an unfinished work portraying Britain’s longest student occupation at   the University of Glasgow.  

Whittle’s practice is grounded in her Scottish-Caribbean heritage and her works reflect her interest in migrating cultures and how the culture of a multi-stranded society develops. Her videos and collage works questions postcolonial power as articulated through memory and history. Often gathering documentation from private and public performances in different site-specific locations, Whittle has developed an archive of images to transform into her collage and film work. The artist’s pieces often respond to the sea as site of labour, capitalism, surveillance and death, but also survival and the possibility for rebirth and transformation. Two digital films, three digital prints and a bronze cast are on show as part of Inner City.
Alberta Whittle and Mitch Miller will be GoMA’s Associate Artists throughout 2018. The Associate Artist programme has been made possible by generous support from the Friends of Glasgow Museums (FoGM).
Gareth James
Museum Manager ,Gallery of Modern Art and Kelvin Hall


Tuesday, 30 January 2018

Maggie Hamilton-A Forgotten Glasgow Girl

Our lecture in January 2018, was given by Joanna Meacock, Curator of British Art. She gave us a fascinating talk about this Glasgow Girl which covered not only her life as an artist  but also how she overcame the difficulties she faced in furthering her career as a female artist in the late 19th century.
An accomplished artist and embroiderer, she was the sister of an artist, James Whitelaw  Hamilton, and married an architect, A.N.Paterson ,brother of James Paterson. She was well known to the Glasgow Boys and was painted by Guthrie. Despite the demands of family life, she continued to paint and embroider and her exhibits were well received in Glasgow, Helensburgh and Edinburgh. It is thought that much of her art is in private collections.