This walk and short cycle route was developed by a team at the University of Strathclyde in 2009. The team comprised; Glen Coutts, Eddie Cussen, Thusha Rajendran, Beverly Wagner and Martin Weise.
"Tympanum" By Niki De Saint-Phalle, GOMA, Royal Exchange Square.
Before the GOMA was opened in Spring 1996, the building had been home to Stirling’s Library. At this time, the pediment was plain stone, but when Glasgow Museums converted it into Glasgow’s newest museum, they commissioned French artist Niki De Saint-Phalle (1930-) to make this mirrored frieze. The frieze illustrates the story of Saint Mungo, incorporating the four symbols with which he is associated (ring, tree, bird, bell). In the centre is the bright figure of Saint Mungo himself, bearing his familiar staff, and with the letter M to identify Glasgow’s patron saint. The irregularly shaped mirror panels allow the viewer to see a fractured reflection of the buildings and the sky, literally putting Glasgow in the picture. Niki De Saint-Phalle is an internationally respected artist who exhibited her work in many forms at the MacLellan Galleries in 1993. More of her work can be seen inside GOMA, including "The Mirrored Room" in the entrance. A tympanum is an architectural name for the space within a pediment. The pediment of a Classical style building is the triangular area on the upper part of the front face.
Lanarkshire House, 191 Ingram Street
This building was erected in 1841 and was designed by the architect David Hamilton (who also worked on Royal Exchange Square and Gallery Of Modern Art). But the facade which faces Ingram Street was added in 1879 by Burnet. The figure on the left represents Britannia, with her Union shield and trident. Lanarkshire House has now been turned into a restaurant.
Shona Kinloch Sculptures, Italian Centre
Statues By Shona Kinloch,
Italian Centre Courtyard, Ingram Street.
Shona Kinloch is a Scottish sculptor. She studied sculpture at Glasgow School Of Art and has become well-known for her unique "chookie-burdie" Lamp-Posts in Garnethill. These castings of a man and a dog, placed at the centre of the restful Italian Centre courtyard, have character and humour. They are very different to the Alexander Stoddart sculptures sited here, and are also different again from the frieze and figures on the back wall of the courtyard by Jack Sloan. They have a rounded, chubby, almost comical form which is quite reminiscent of a cartoon character. They do not relate to an ideal of bodily perfection like the Neo-Classical sculptures of Stoddart, but present a stylised idea of human and animal forms which are endearing and amusing. Both the man and the dog are pointing their noses at the sky, as though they were sniffing a delicious smell in the air. They also appear to be looking up at the sky, as though an aeroplane or a bird has flown overhead.
They are cast in bronze and they are greenish because of the patina on the surface of the metal. This is a chemical process which can be the result of weathering, or by treating the sculpture with chemicals. There are some fine details around the dog’s peering eyes and the fine curling hairs on its back.
(Former) Trustee Savings Bank
TSB Building, Ingram Street
This elegant sandstone former bank was built between 1894-1900 by the architect J J Burnet (1857-1938). The lavish sculpture was designed by George Frampton and carved by sculptor William Shirreffs. The figure of St Mungo (left) was carved by Frampton himself, who also made the statue of St Mungo at Glasgow Art Gallery & Museum.
County Buildings, Wilson Street
This massive building was designed as County Offices by Clarke & Bell in 1841. Just one of its many fine features is this frieze by Walter Buchan, showing Classical figures and animals. Along the roof line you can see great carved stone urns. The building is currently empty, although several plans such as a fashion centre and a museum have been suggested.
Empire, Brunswick Street, By Douglas Gordon (1997).
High on the side of a tall building in the heart of the Merchant City hangs a bright, slightly flickering neon sign. The single, bright green word "EMPIRE" projects from the wall like the sign for a cinema. But there are some quirks to this otherwise ordinary looking urban sign. The letters of the word EMPIRE are reversed. The word can only be read the correct way round if the viewer is standing at an angle which allows them to see the sign reflected in the dark mirror on the wall. The letters on either side of the sign sometimes flicker, like the "Hotel" signs seen in American films.
There are many ways of trying to interpret this piece, and a viewer may not see the piece as an artwork at all. There are no labels or signs to identify this as an artwork.
The word "Empire" has many historical and cultural dimensions. But Douglas Gordon is attempting to provoke the viewer to embark on their own meditations on the word "Empire". For example, in the 1930s, "EMPIRE" would have been a popular name for cinemas all over the United Kingdom. Perhaps the placing of this sign relates to an actual cinema which once occupied this space, recalling the thriving cinema culture which existed in Glasgow until the 1960s.
The British Empire was once the largest and most powerful empire in the world. It was seen as a great civilizing influence by many patriots, who felt that British power and culture would help 'developing' countries such as India and Hong Kong. Now, the days of the Empire are sometimes seen as a shameful chapter in British history, when brutality and privilege made life unfair for colonial citizens. There are many other ways of approaching ideas suggested by the word "Empire", but it is not clear exactly how the viewer should proceed. Each individual is challenged to examine their own thoughts.
It is also important to make comparisons and connections with the actual context where the sign is placed. Glasgow used to be a great trading and manufacturing city. Many of the British Army’s most famous soldiers are commemorated in statues throughout the city; for instance, Sir John Moore and Lord Clyde in George Square, Wellington in Queen Street, and Lord Roberts in Kelvingrove Park. This simple sign has many complex connotations which are intended to question fixed ideas about history and culture.
Douglas Gordon is an artist from Glasgow who has shown his work in many cities around the world. He studied at Glasgow School Of Art, and in 1996 won the prestigious Turner Prize. The arts organisation Visual Arts Projects worked in the management of this project.
Cherub, Tron Theatre, Argyle Street
Fitting snugly into an alcove on the corner of one of Glasgow's favourite theatres, Kenny Hunter's bronze Cherub is a beautifully made symbol of innocence and impishness. Cherubs are a very old symbol often seen in allegorical paintings. Sometimes they are quite angelic, but mostly they are a mix of harmless child and devilish imp. This sculpture was installed in 1998. The Tron Theatre was completely refurbished in 1998, and this piece was added during the early stages of the work.
Tollbooth, Glasgow Cross
The Tollbooth was first built in 1627 by John Boyd, then rebuilt by David Hamilton in 1814. It was once part of a much bigger toll building which was demolished in 1921. Seventeen bells are held within the steeple. The steeple was once part of the entrance to Glasgow, when a toll was paid for entry.
Pavement carvings, Candleriggs
Pavement Carvings, Candleriggs
These unique pavement carvings were introduced as part of the Candleriggs Re -Development. They were made by Francis Pelly and show symbols of the various trades which Glasgow has been famous for. This carving shows a set square, calipers and saw which carpenters might use.
The paving stones also carry poetry - right under your feet you can find verses by the renowned Glasgow poet Edwin Morgan. The verses have an eery, nostalgic quality to them and speak of Glasgow's past and the people who worked hard to make the city what it is.
Royal Exchange Square
Royal Exchange Square
This is a very old part of Glasgow which was recently refurbished to adapt to modern needs. It was originally designed by Archibald Elliot and David Hamilton around 1839. It is defined by the terraces on the north and south of the square, and is closed at the western end by the old Royal Bank Of Scotland (now Borders Books).
In the centre is the Gallery Of Modern Art (GOMA), which once was a mansion house, a Stock Exchange and a Library. It changed to GOMA in 1996. At the same time, a company called Gillespies were asked to make changes to the square itself to make it safer for pedestrians and more attractive. The square changed from a congested street filled with cars to a calm, sophisticated precinct with shops, pavement cafes and seating. The materials used are hard-wearing and attractive. People on foot no longer have to battle with traffic to get from Queen Street to Buchanan Street. The whole area now has a more European feel. Also, the square is now a favourite place for skateboarders to practice tricks on the smooth stone slabs !
About This Trail
This trail is only about one mile (roughly 1.5 Km) long, and is an easy level walk, but it takes in a huge range of public art, urban design and historic buildings. It might be a good idea to take binoculars as well as a camera to fully appreciate the intricate sculpture and castings along the route, many of which are above eye level. Don't forget that Glasgow city centre is very busy with traffic so take care when admiring the art works!
Statue of Lord Wellington
Wellington, Royal Exchange Square.
This statue of Wellington is very well-known in Glasgow, as it stands in front of one of the city's most important buildings and can be easily seen from several different viewpoints. The Duke Of Wellington (1769-1852) fought in India (1799-1803) and in the Peninsular War (1808-1814). But he is remembered mostly for his defeat of Napoleon at The Battle Of Waterloo in 1815. His real name was Arthur Wellesley, and he was made a Duke in 1814. He was also the Prime Minister from 1828-30.
He was known as "The Iron Duke", and when he died was given the most tremendous state funeral which had ever been seen in Britain. This statue of the Duke was made by Baron Carlo Marochetti, RA and was erected in 1844. Around the plinth are bas-relief panels which depict famous battle scenes from Assaye and Waterloo.
This view of Wellington has become very familiar - it is part of Glasgow legend that he wears a traffic cone on his head most evenings...
Castings, 178- 180 Ingram Street
Portrait Castings, By Sandy Stoddart
178-180 Ingram Street
Each of these small bronze castings
depict men who helped to shape the Merchant City. They include the builder and stone-mason Mungo Naismith; the architect David Hamilton (who worked on the original Royal Exchange Square); the plasterer Thomas Clayton (1710-1760); and the merchant and designer Allan Dreghorn (1706-1764).
Italia and Mercury
Statues Of "Italia" and "Mercury", By Alexander Stoddart, Italian Centre, Ingram Street.
Alexander Stoddart (born 1959) is a sculptor from Paisley who specialises in making Neo-Classical style statues representing the human form. The term Neo-Classical relates to a movement in 18th Century art and design which was influenced by ancient Greek and Roman art. These civilizations produced the greatest philosophers, playwrights, artists and engineers, as well as pioneering types of politics and language. In 18th Century Europe, many artists chose Classical forms to represent the new feeling for democracy and a belief in high ideals such as beauty and perfection. Greek and Roman sculptors in particular were thought to make perfect models of the human form. Another important theme was the depiction of deities or gods, representing beauty, love, war and so on. Stoddart has used these same forms and mythical ideas in his work. In the context of Glasgow, with its richly ornamented buildings, Stoddart’s statues may look at first as if they come from centuries ago.
Stoddart has chosen to depict in his work figures who relate to ancient principles, and who are depicted in typical Greek-Roman style. Symbolic features such as head-dresses, staffs and draped robes are revived, and the figure of Mars is naked to display an ideal of bodily perfection. Italia holds a cornucopia, or horn of plenty, in her left hand, representing abundance and prosperity. In her right hand is the Flowering Staff, a symbol of nature. The curious castle-shape on her head represents The State and is called a Mural Corona. The figures also adopt a very dignified and serene pose, suggesting noble qualities. It is often suggested that this type of architecture and ornamentation is perfect for Glasgow as it blends in well with the existing structure of the city.
Jack Sloan Sculptures, Italian Centre
Steel Figures By Jack Sloan, Italian Centre
These galvanised steel sculptures show a different kind of human figure to the Shona Kinloch or Alexander Stoddart sculptures. They are abstract representations of the human body, with curving lines and flat sections acting as limbs. The figures are mounted on the wall of this quiet courtyard. He also made the steel screens on the top floor windows. Jack Sloan also made the sculpture "Prometheus" and some sculptures in the Gorbals.
158 Ingram Street
This fine building was built in 1805 by architect David Hamilton. It replaced the original Hutcheson's Hospital
in Trongate, which was demolished. The hospital was founded by the Hutcheson Brothers, George and Thomas, who wanted to offer support to old men and boys without hope. The two brothers are commemorated by these statues, sculpted by James Colquhoun in 1649 and removed from the original building.
The new Hutcheson Hall has a dramatic spire and Corinthian columns which make it a popular building for visitors. It is currently the home of the National Trust For Scotland, but the earlier history of the building and the Hutcheson Brothers is remembered in an inscription above the columns. The Hall "closes" Hutcheson Street, which means you get great views of the Hall as you walk north up the street.
David Hamilton worked on many buildings in the Merchant City. See also Lanarkshire House, GOMA, and Royal Exchange Square. There is also a small portrait sculpture of Hamilton by Sandy Stoddart at 178-180 Ingram Street
Mercat Cross, Glasgow Cross,
This noble landmark replaces a similar artefact removed in 1659. It was designed by Edith Burnet Hughes in a medieval Scots style. It shows a rampant unicorn supporting a shield, and stands on a small octagonal pedestal. It was completed in 1930, and now stands at the busy hub of Glasgow Cross, one of the city's oldest areas.
Mercat Building, Glasgow Cross
This office building by A. Graham Henderson was completed in 1928. It features some great sculpture, such as this crouching figure by Benno Schotz. This figure represents sculpture and holds carving tools. You can see more of Benno Schotz's sculptures in Kelvingrove Park, and on the Bank Of Scotland in Sauchiehall Street.
Candleriggs Re-Development, Candleriggs.
These improvements to the stretch of Candleriggs between Wilson Street and Ingram Street have made a big difference to the area. Using high quality materials and custom designs, the environmental design company Gillespies developed this scheme for the street in 1997. It makes the street more sympathetic to both cars and people. With wider pavements, protective illuminated bollards and a new road surface, this street is better for all of its users.
Sculpture by George Wylie, donated to the University by the artist entitled 'Maternity'.
New Jordanhill building
The state-of-the-art building will be constructed on George Street on land adjacent to the Graham Hills building. The project, thought to be the biggest single investment in a Faculty of Education's infrastructure anywhere in the UK, will offer staff and students top-class facilities to enable closer teaching and research collaborations across the University.
The new building forms part of the £250 million development of the campus. This includes a new building for the Strathclyde Institute for Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, to help further world-class research in drug discovery and development. And recreation and sports research facilities will be vastly enhanced by a new Sports and Health centre.
It is anticipated work on the new Education building will be completed by 2011. It will include a large teaching cluster at the base, with bespoke academic and research space on the upper levels. The building will provide a gateway into the campus between George Street and Richmond Street.
New Sports Building
A multi-million pound centre for sports and physical activity is to be built on Cathedral Street in the heart of Glasgow to boost health and well-being across the University and in the wider community.
The centre will house top-of-the-range teaching, research and recreational facilities, and will support the promotion of physical activity. It will open in 2011, to coincide with completion of the nearby building for the Faculty of Education, and the run-up to the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
It forms part of the £300 million Estate Development Plan for the University's city centre John Anderson Campus.
The ambitious plans include:
* A fitness suite, six-court sports hall, aerobics/dance studio
* Three squash courts
* A 25m swimming pool, steam and sauna room
* Assessment / treatment rooms
* A human function laboratory and specialist academic teaching facilities
* Computer teaching space
* A cafe
A trailblazer in pharmacy and the life sciences, the University is harnessing its expertise in these fields and building on its past success by creating the Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences (SIPBS) - a pioneering, world-class centre for teaching and research, with a particular focus on drug discovery and development.
The new Institute will drive forward the search for new drugs to treat major diseases such as cancers, cardiovascular disease, psychiatric and inflammatory conditions as well as infectious diseases.
A new purpose-built building is required that will attract leading scientists to Glasgow, bring research groups together, facilitate more and better interaction with industry, produce more numerous technologies for exploitation, make easier the creative cross disciplinary collaborations on which successful future drug discovery depends and improve facilities for both students and staff.
The University will inject £28m into the £36m capital build - its largest investment in a single project to date. We have already secured lead gifts of £2.75m from charitable trusts such as the Wolfson Foundation, the Robertson Trust and the Garfield Weston Foundation, and the balance will be raised through a campaign for philanthropic support.
"Callanish", University Of Strathclyde Campus.
This massive sculpture by Gerald Laing is made in Cor-Ten Steel and was completed in 1971. It is inspired by a prehistoric stone circle on the island of Lewis. It is a good example of Modernist abstract sculpture, and has a rough rusted surface.
Glasgow Cathedral. Glasgow Cathedral is one of the city's most important buildings as it marks the site where Glaschu was apparently founded by St Mungo in the 7th century. The story goes that Kentigern (St Mungo) was the first bishop of this area. The cathedral was consecrated in 1136. It was mostly built during the 13th century and took decades to build. There was once another tower and spire near the front, and in the 17th and 18th centuries it was surrounded by many houses and the Bishop's Castle. The whole area was gradually cleared and re-built with new buildings like the Royal Infirmary. Now that the precinct has been modernised, the Cathedral looks more settled again. It is just as splendid on the inside, where you can see fine examples of stained glass and carved stone.
In Pursuit of...
"In Pursuit Of..." By Shona Kinloch, 1996 Taylor Street, University of Strathclyde Campus.
This sculptural mural by Shona Kinloch is installed on the wall of a student housing area within the student village of University Of Strathclyde. As you can see, a dog, cat and some birds are chasing one another across the brick wall of the building. The cat chases the bird, and the dog chases the cat, but the bird at the top has flown away to safety. The animals are made of bronze with a patina. They are modelled in low-relief, and their bright colour stands out strongly from the colour of the brick. Shona Kinloch has made a number of public artworks in Glasgow, including Sculptures at the Italian Centre and the Garnethill Lighting Project. The University Of Strathclyde has commissioned several public artworks for the campus, and some of the others can be seen in the rest of this Urban Trail.
Barony Hall, Castle Street.
This large church was finished in 1890, the design of architects J.J. Burnet (1857-1938) and J.A. Campbell (1859-1909). For a long time this beautiful building was unused, but now it is the Congregation Hall of the University Of Strathclyde, where graduation ceremonies, awards and other events are held. The hall is topped by an intricate spire called a "fleche", which means "arrow". There are several stained glass windows which were fitted into the hall between 1935 and 1955, by the artists Herbert Hendrie, Douglas Hamilton and William Wilson.
In a restructuring of technical education in 1887, Anderson's College, the Young Chair of Technical Chemistry, the College of Science and Arts, Atkinson's and Allan Glen's Institutions merged to form the Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical College, or 'The Tech' as it was affectionately known. Anderson's College Medical School became a separate institution at this time. The College initially occupied the existing buildings of its constituent institutions but the expansion in student numbers, and the desirability of centralising on one site, required a new building. The building was designed by David Barclay and completed in several phases. The foundation stone of the Royal College Building, adjoining the Anderson's College site, was laid by His Majesty King Edward VII on 14 May 1903. In line with John Anderson's vision of his Institution as a place of useful learning, the College offered a wide range of day and evening courses to support the needs of industry in the West of Scotland.
City Chambers, George Square
Glasgow's main civic building was designed by William Young and finished in 1890. The grandeur of the building has always focused attention on Glasgow, and the interiors are just as fine as the exterior. Just one of the many features of the building are these amazing arches in John Street.
he Necropolis, Glasgow's stunning Victorian cemetery, was designed by the landscape gardener David Mylne and opened in 1833. It has many impressive monuments to the city's upper classes. The biggest of the monuments is the towering column and statue of John Knox (1513-72), the church reformer, (far left of picture) erected in 1825. The Necropolis is huge and needs a while to explore properly.
Glasgow -Edinburgh Cycle
The Glasgow to Edinburgh cycle route runs alongside the river here. Once a year in hosts the Great Scottish Cycle.
Tour of Britain Podium
A number of rising stars won competitions as part of the 2007 Tour. The overall winner Romain Feillieu went on to lead the 2008 Tour de France.
Mark Cavendish won the green jersey of the sprinters competition in his first year as a professional. In the 2008 season he went on to win more races than any other cyclist including an astonishing four stages of the Tour de France; twice as many as the next best rider.
Start point- short cycle route
The University is on a small, but steep hill. Montrose Street is a test of anyones cycling legs, or brakes.
Billy Bisland Cycles
In the 1970s Billy Bisland ran a local bike shop and noticed the talent of a Glaswegian cyclist called Robert Millar. Millar went on to be the most successful Grand Tour rider to date. He came cruelly close to winning the Tour of Spain and also finished on the podium of the Tour de Italy. He remains the only British rider to have been crowned King of the Mountains in the Tour de France and so win the prestigious polka dot jersey that goes with this title.
In recognition of the part that Billy Bisland played in his development, Robert Millar presented the bike shop with a polka dot jersey that he raced in the final stages of the 1984 Tour de France. The jersey remains on display behind the counter in this unassuming shop.
Glasgow Green is a regular haunt for runners and cyclists from the University.
Head past the Peoples Palace and the Trafalgar monument towards the river.
Tour of Britain 2007 - Paul Manning
Glasgow has hosted the Tour of Britain on the last two occasions. The 2007 Tour finished on Glasgow Green with Paul Manning winning the days racing. The following year he won Olympic Gold in Beijing.
The subsequent sprint for second place exceeded the parks speed 10mph speed limit by at least 25 mph.
Back up the Hill
If you are on a bicycle at this point you probably want to change down a gear.