George IV Bridge – celebrating 50 years

First foreign reviews of Charles Rennie Mackintosh's work: acquired in 1976

Volume 9 of an influential German periodical has special significance in the history of Scottish art. This issue of 'Dekorative Kunst' contains the first foreign reviews of the pioneering work of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the Glasgow School.

'Dekorative Kunst: illustrierte Zeitschrift für angewandte Kunst', was launched by the art publisher Alexander Koch of Darmstadt in order to promote the ideals of Art Nouveau. It was published in 37 volumes between 1898 and 1929. The National Library of Scotland holds a copy of the first 10 issues (1898-1902).

Our photograph shows a corner in the living room of Windyhill, a country house Mackintosh built in 1901 for William Davidson at Kilmacolm in Renfrewshire. It is one of many photographs of both the interior and exterior which were printed in volume 9.

Windyhill was one of Charles Rennie Mackintosh's rare large-scale domestic commissions. Mackintosh was also able to supervise the interior decoration and to design some furniture. Looking at the photographs of Windyhill now, it is perhaps difficult to appreciate how revolutionary these interiors must have seemed at the time.

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