Muriel Gray

Job Title:

Author and Broadcaster


Honorary Graduates


Muriel Gray
with GSA graduates at Graduation 2013

Muriel Gray


Muriel Gray

Born in East Kilbride in 1958, Muriel Gray graduated from the Glasgow School of Art with a BA (Hons) in Graphic Design and Illustration and became Assistant Head of Design at the National Museum of Antiquities in Edinburgh, but it was her secondary career as a member of a band called the Von Trapp Family which would have the greater influence on the direction of her career. It was this which led to her presenting the Channel 4 television series The Tube from 1982 and The Media Show from 1987 to 1989, the start of a career in television and radio which has spanned 30 years and included many highlights including the definitive documentary for BBC 2 about the Glasgow Boys, shows as varied as the Booker Prize and Ride On, a motoring magazine programme, for Channel 4 , and appearances on BBC2’s Grumpy Old Women and the Design Awards for BBC.

In 1989 Gray formed the television production company, Gallus Besom, which produced shows like the hugely popular Munro Show (accompanied by a book entitled The First Fifty: Munro Bagging without a Beard) and Art is Dead –Long Live TV, a spoof series about 5 artists. Gallus Besom became Ideal World, the biggest TV production Company in Scotland. It merged with Wark Clements in 2004 to form IWC Media which was then sold in 2005 to RDF and is now part of the Zodiak Media Group.

In 1995 Gray became a best selling horror writer with the publication of her first novel The Trickster, followed by Furnace in 1997, and The Ancient in 2001, and in 2006 she wrote the definitive history of Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum to mark its reopening.

Gray is the only woman to have held the post of Rector of the University of Edinburgh; she became the Patron of Trees for Life (Scotland) in 2005; the first Patron of Scotland’s Additional Support Needs Mediation Forum, RESOLVE:ASL in 2009; chaired the Orange Prize for Fiction 2007 and was a judge for the Robert Burns Humanitarian Award. She has also sat on the boards of many charitable and heritage organisations.

Gray's Honorary Doctorate, conferred by the University of Glasgow, was awarded at the GSA Graduation ceremony on the morning of Friday 14 June 2013 at the Bute Hall, University of Glasgow.