Club outing to Windyhill, Kilmacolm on Sunday 30 September
This picture-perfect home outside Glasgow, one of only two private homes Charles Rennie Mackintosh built, is a fine example of the designer’s work, often referred to (quite rightly) as an ‘architectural gem’.
David Cairns, current owner of Windyhill has kindly offered to host members of the Glasgow Art Club (and their guests) at his private residence on Sunday the 30th of September, 2pm – 4pm. Places are strictly limited to a maximum of 40, so early booking is advisable. The cost of this trip will be £30 per person.
Pamela Robertson has called the property “Mackintosh’s first essay into the room as a work of art”. He loved exploring the contrast between strong right-angles and floral-designed decorative motifs, and at Windyhill he was able to give his imagination full rein.
Working with his wife, Margaret Macdonald, Mackintosh had complete control over the project. The couple designed the furniture, fireplaces, panelling, stained glass, light fixtures and decorative schemes. The Art Nouveau style that will forever be associated with Mackintosh can still be seen in the glass-fronted cupboards, light fixtures, worktops and wood panelling (examples of which are pictured below.)
Mackintosh was commissioned to build Windyhill in 1900. He was just 32 at the time. The house was completed and occupied by 1901. William Davidson, who commissioned Mackintosh, was a wealthy provisions merchant, who would become a lifelong patron and friend. Mackintosh appears in Davidson family photos and executed several other commissions for the family, including designing the headstone for Davidson’s father-in-law’s tomb. Later in his career, when Mackintosh was struggling financially, Davidson helped support his friend by buying his watercolours.
David Cairns is an ardent devotee of Mackintosh and has spent years restoring the property to its former glory. He bought the house in poor condition, but has painstakingly tried to reproduce the features most characteristic of Mackintosh’s work, using craftsmen approved by the Glasgow School of Art. Replacing the light-fittings in the hall alone cost Cairns £70,000.
We look forward to hearing first hand David’s experiences of undertaking such large scale restorations and about what life really is like living in ‘a work of art.’ This is set to be a very special, exclusive and memorable day out for members of the Club.