Glasgow School of Art reveals full toll of fire

Firefighters trying to put out the blaze in May last year. Picture: John Devlin

Firefighters trying to put out the blaze in May last year. Picture: John Devlin

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AROUND 8,000 books and journals were lost in the devastating blaze at Glasgow School of Art, bosses have admitted.

Almost 20 per cent of the institution’s rare book collection was lost when the iconic Mackintosh Library was destroyed. Some 90 oil paintings and nearly 100 items of furniture were also hit by last May’s blaze.

Two paintings by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, who designed the GSA’s A-listed building, one work by Joan Eardley and several by former director Francis Henry Newbery were among those destroyed.

GSA director Tom Inns also confirmed the “vast majority” of its historic archives and collections were intact, along with around 60 pieces of furniture.

The art school has also revealed that rare books, parts of a studio clock, iconic light fittings and a silver salver were among the items recovered from the library building during a 12-week archaeological survey.

But the vast majority of the contents of the library were lost, including virtually everything in a studio above, including the most of the oil paintings and furniture.

Professor Inns said: “We’re obviously devastated to have lost anything from our archives and collections. Fortunately the vast majority of the artefacts survive, including all the works on paper by Mackintosh and many of the most important pieces of furniture.”

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