Glasgow School of Art unveils historic Xmas cards exhibition

'Odd Bods', c1960s by Gordon F Huntly. Picture: Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections
'Odd Bods', c1960s by Gordon F Huntly. Picture: Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections
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A collection of historic Christmas cards from the archives and collections of the Glasgow School of Art has been put on display.

The showcase, which also includes photographs and ephemera, spans over 100 years of the School’s history.

Card from Kath Whyte designed by Gordon Huntly. Picture: Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections

Card from Kath Whyte designed by Gordon Huntly. Picture: Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections

Titled ‘Merry Christmas! A History of GSA Christmas Cards’ the event will be on show in the Reid Building until 21 December with a limited edition set of some of the designs available for sale in the GSA Shop.

The exhibition has great historical significance as Jocelyn Grant of GSA Archives & Collections explains: “Since the School’s opening The Glasgow School of Art staff and students have celebrated Christmas through the creation of beautifully illustrated cards which they sent to one another.

“The cards on show in the exhibition reveal the work that this close-knit community of students and staff put in to events and artwork alongside their study and teaching.

“Many of the Christmas cards on display today were gifted to GSA Archives & Collections by notable GSA alumni and staff including Daisy McGlashan, Kath Whyte and Conrad McKenna, and they demonstrate the talents of the individuals who make up GSA’s history.”

The cards on show date back to the late 19th century and span both world wars. “The public will be able to see designs that show the impact of external factors on the School, in particular the First and Second World Wars,” says Grant. “They show how students both incorporated these events into their work and also looked to contribute their skills to the war effort.”

The cards will be displayed in frames on the walls and in vitrines alongside photographs and other ephemera.

Two of the designers whose cards are on show are GSA graduates Kit and Margaret Grant. A former tutor in Interior Design, Margaret Grant is now 96. She is delighted that her designs will be shown as part of this showcase.

“I had a terrific time both as a student and a member of staff at the Glasgow School of Art,” says Margaret. “I’m delighted that my designs and those created by my husband, Kit, are being featured in this exhibition sharing them with a whole new generation.”

A limited edition set historic Christmas card designs has been reproduced by the GSA. Featuring four different designs, (two examples of each) the pack of cards is priced £10 and is available from the GSA Shop (in person and online).

Merry Christmas! A History of GSA Christmas Cards is on show at the GSA from 7 – 21 December 2016. Open 10am – 4.30pm daily. Entry is free.

The GSA Shop is open seven days a week 10am – 4.30pm.