Mackintosh Symposium 2018
The Glasgow School of Art and The Hunterian, University of Glasgow

Event Type:



Kelvin Hall (University of Glasgow Lecture Theatre) 1445 Argyle Street Glasgow G3 8AW


20 Oct 2018

Sat 09:00 - 17:30



Mackintosh Symposium 2018
Mackintosh detail

Mackintosh Symposium 2018

Event info

Mackintosh Symposium 2018

Intangible Matters: Mackintosh, Authenticity and Conservation

A symposium highlighting the recent conservation projects on Mackintosh Heritage.

Jointly organised by The Glasgow School of Art and The Hunterian at the University of Glasgow.

This one-day symposium intends to look at the complex issues around authenticity and replication through the lens of Mackintosh Heritage past, present, and future. This event was conceived at the start of the year as a celebration of what seemed a new ‘Golden Age’ for Mackintosh in Glasgow, but which has been indelibly marked by the terrible second fire at the Glasgow School of Art. Nonetheless, an incredible body of research yet remains from that project, alongside those completed this year – the Oak Room at the V&A Dundee, and Mackintosh at the Willow. All of these efforts, as well as the work of many years past, are yet worthy of celebration and reflection.

In particular, we seek to question and rethink more traditional conservation philosophies, notably materialist approaches set forth, for example, in the Society for Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) manifesto:

Building fabric is precious. A concern for its protection helps ensure that the essence of an old building survives for future generations to appreciate. The SPAB Approach therefore stands against Restorationist arguments that it is possible and worthwhile to return a building to its original - or imagined original - form. Equally, the SPAB Approach generally rejects arguments that original design or cultural associations are more important than surviving fabric.

Is this approach still relevant, and if so, in what contexts? Are there circumstances where this ideal falls short? What of the more intangible aspects of the built environment which may supersede the primacy of material fabric?

Keynote speakers are from outwith the field of Mackintosh studies to provide a broader framework for considering issues of authenticity and replication. Speakers include scholars in the area of Mackintosh Studies from a sampling of these projects, as well as specialists of heritage and museum practice. Demonstrations will be held during the lunch period from experts in visualisation, exhibition design, and traditional makers and craftspeople.

Keynote Speakers:

Sian Jones, Chair in Environmental History and Heritage, University of Stirling

Neil Curtis, Head of Museums & Special Collections at the University of Aberdeen


Alison Brown, Curator of European Decorative Arts, Glasgow Life

David Cairns, Owner, Windyhill

Robyne Calvert, Mackintosh Research Fellow, The Glasgow School of Art

Jake Kaner, Assoc Dean for Research, Art & Design, Nottingham-Trent University

Steve Love, The Glasgow School of Art and Damien Smith, ISO Design

Ranald MacInnes, Historic Environment Scotland

Pamela Robertson, Professor Emerita, University of Glasgow; Expert Advisor, Willow Tea Rooms Trust

Stuart Robertson, Director of the CRM Society

Joseph Sharples, Mackintosh Curator, The Hunterian

Steph Scholten, Director, The Hunterian

Tickets £20 general admission 
£10 Student entry 

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