Glasgow Southern Art Club

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The History of the Club


Originally called the Maxwell Art Club - a name that survived a brief four months - The Glasgow Southern Art Club, as it then became known, began on July 16 1953. It was formed after the closure of an art class held in nearby Shawlands Academy.

Over the years the club has met in various venues close to its roots in the South Side. Currently it is meeting at The David Cargill Centre on Ledard Road and hopes to enjoy the excellent facilities there for many years to come. It meets weekly on Monday evenings from September until June.

The first Glasgow Southern Art Club exhibition was held in November 1954 in the then club rooms in Shawbridge Street. By 1960 annual exhibitions were being held in the McLellan Galleries. However, by 1988 rising costs made this venue unaffordable. Since then a variety of locations have been used and most years at least two exhibitions have been held as well as less formal events such as Open Studio Days.

In earlier years there were club holidays to destinations like Culzean, Kirkcudbright and St. Andrews. While whole club holidays have not survived, there are still many painting trips made by smaller groups of stalwarts. Annual outings have survived however. Although Fife coastal villages have been perennial favorites, occasionally other destinations prove popular such as a very wet Luss, which provided inspiration for artist/ poet Roberta McLardy. Roberta wrote many poems for the club and in 2005 presented the Club with a volume of her collected works.

Dinners with guest speakers such as the late George Wylie and Liz Lochhead (appointed Scots Makar in 2011) have been a feature of the club, especially on significant anniversaries.

Joe Henderson Memorial Award for Landscape
Joe Henderson Memorial Award for Landscape

In 1983 Constance Hamilton, one of the club's founder members, died. In her memory, her family donated a silver rose bowl as a much coveted annual prize. More recently, Audrey and John Turner presented another Award, the Turner Trophy, which was later joined by the Joe Henderson Memorial Award for Landscape. These are all awarded annually. A more recent prize awarded when we exhibit at their venue, has been a year's membership of the Glasgow Art Club.

From its small beginnings, the Club now has around seventy members, whose supportiveness, friendliness and enthusiasm should keep the Club thriving for many more years.

Edited version of 'The Story of the Southern Art Club' by Margaret Duff