GlasgowCategory: Ad House Gallery
In Glasgow in the 1890s, four students at the Glasgow School of Art — Charles Mackintosh, J. Herbert McNair and sisters Margaret and Frances Macdonald — began to collaborate. They became known as the Group of Four, or Glasgow School. They designed graphics, textiles and interiors and architecture. Mackintosh’s architectural style is often defined by a slight curve where the perpendicular lines meet (1/2 Art Nouveau, 1/2 Early Modern). The same is true of his furniture: straight lines with a bit of decoration.
Architecturally, The Four were minimalists, emphasizing white walls, light and a limited number of pieces in key places. Vertical lines, tempered by small arcs, carefully located arcs and circles marked their style. Every piece of furniture had a purpose and was thought out.
Mackintosh borrowed from Celtic themes and designs in his work. He also broke away from Art Nouveau in his restraint. He used space and angular lines, which really distinguished him from his European contemporaries. It combined with cubism in fine arts to lay the foundation for an entirely new visual aesthetic, Modernism.
Another significant figure in Glasgow was Talwin Morris. Morris got a job as the art director at Blackie’s, a Glasgow publishing firm, and was influenced by The Four. He helped spread the look with a huge output of encyclopedias, novels and more.
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