Toshie Trashed

Gavin Stamp

The Scott Street exterior of the west wing of Glasgow School of Art in 1933.
The Scott Street exterior of the west wing of Glasgow School of Art in 1933.

I had the daily pleasure of seeing the west wing of the Glasgow School of Art, with its castle-like stonework and triple tall oriels rising dramatically from the steep slope of Scott Street, when, for more than a decade, I taught architectural history at the Mackintosh School of Architecture. I also had the privilege of being able to explore the interior of the School of Art at will. And I became more and more impressed. It was a building that worked, though made of ordinary and traditional materials – stone, timber and iron – on a limited budget; it was the product of a mind at once practical and imaginative. Throughout, as my then boss, Andy MacMillan, put it, Mackintosh ‘demonstrates a creative exploitation of each and every specific requirement, seizing the opportunity to create an architectural “event” through some feat of invention’.

You are not logged in