Glasgow treasured Art School under assault again



An utterly tragic second fire has almost completely destroyed the rebuilding work on the Glasgow School of Art which was gutted four years ago. Sitting in the heart of the city it’s a celebration of Charles Rennie Macintosh, who designed the building with its iconic ornamental ironwork, soaring windows and distinctive wood-panelled interior.

The foundation stone was laid on 25 May 1898, with the Sun in Gemini as it was for McIntosh’s birth and oddly enough the 2014 fire as well.  On the foundation chart tr Pluto is square the Mars in Aries exactly now for a brutal destruction. When the previous fire occurred, tr Neptune was square the Sun/Pluto midpoint and tr Pluto square the Solar Arc Neptune. Tr Neptune has now moved in to a similarly undermining square to Pluto this year. There is a ‘lucky break’ Solar Arc Sun conjunct the Jupiter over the coming year so perhaps it will start another rebuild.

There are various start charts for Glasgow though the 20 April 1450 JC probably works best. It has a Taurus Sun square Pluto and trine Saturn in Virgo, which fits a tough, industrial, heavy engineering and shipbuilding city. It also has an explosive, violent Mars in Capricorn opposition Uranus in Cancer, which also makes sense of No Mean City, at one point overrun by gangs. When the first fire occurred in 2014 the tr Pluto square tr Uranus was hitting on the Glasgow Uranus; and exactly now tr Pluto is conjunct the Glasgow Mars, so virtually the same as the Foundation Stone chart. There have been two other major fires in the city already this year.   That Pluto transit to the Glasgow Mars runs on till late 2019; with a disruptive tr Uranus square Pluto from this July onwards for a year. 2019 also sees an uncertain, panicky tr Neptune opposition Saturn followed by a disruptive tr Uranus conjunct the Sun in 2020. Sometimes when there are major disasters in a city/country it is a harbinger of extensive changes to come.

Charles Rennie Mackintosh, 7 June 1868 11.15am Glasgow, was an architect and water colourist, whose work was influential, along with his wife fellow artist Margaret MacDonald, in the European Art Nouveau movement. He left behind several buildings of singular design and many plans, but he abandoned architecture for painting, lived for some years in Port Vendres in France and died aged 60 of cancer. He was largely ignored except by Glaswegians until 30 years ago when his work was rediscovered.

He had an ambitious 10th house Gemini Sun, but his chart is marked largely by a frustrated Mars Pluto in Taurus, and a visionary T square of Uranus opposition a Capricorn Moon square Neptune Jupiter in Aries. His leadership North Node in Leo is hidden in his creative 12th house.

At the moment his (posthumous) chart has tr Neptune square Sun, as the monument to his talent is undermined yet again; with Solar Arc Sun in a ‘shocking collision’ opposition his Mars. His Solar Arc Pluto is also exactly square his Uranus opposition Moon for a major emotional upset. His chart is less optimistic about a speedy conclusion to this series of disasters, with a blocked road ahead for the next four years.

5 thoughts on “Glasgow treasured Art School under assault again

  1. Agreed Chris, They should rebuild it from scratch from the original plans with modern safety specs written in. Mackintosh’s Art Lovers House which wasn’t realized in his day was erected in Glasgow two decades back. There will be pressure to redo it the same. Though they’ll have to find out what set the fire this time. Seems like egregious carelessness to put it mildly. Nearly finished and no sprinklers working and no fire alarm. Beggars belief.

  2. I hope they do rebuild the Glassgow School of Art; it’s a beautiful landmark and part of the city’s history. Even if they can’t salvage enough of the building’s original foundation materials, they should at least rebuild it in the same exact style as the original building.

    This makes me think of the well known Christchurch Cathedral in New Zealand – a historic Anglican Church and landmark that has been repeatedly suffered damage as a result of earthquakes.

    In 2011, after New Zealand’s last major earthquake, there was a debate (which lasted for a few years) over the future of Christchurch Cathedral. Many were pessimistic and assumed the landmark would be demolished and a new church would be built in it’s place. However, luckily, last year, the decision was made to save the church and restore it.

    So, I’m optimistic that Glassgow School of Art will be saved and restored too – it’s too precious of a landmark to ignored.

    Chris Romero
    Jacksonville, Florida

  3. If he was not appreciated during his life time, perhaps karma is working on his behalf and if they try to rebuild it a another disaster will prevail!

    • So, you think because Charles Rennie Mackintosh wasn’t “appreciated” for his work during his life time, then “karma” is working on his “behalf” to destroy his works so future generations cannot appreciate them either? That’s ludicrous! FYI, there were many architects, artists, photographers, etc who were not appreciated during their life times. However, they’re appreciated now. So, it’s imperative that we conserve as many works of art and architecture as possible.

      I want the Glassgow School of Art to be restored – I don’t care how much money they have to spend, it’s a landmark and a national treasure. So, it’s worth the cost.

      Chris Romero

      Jacksonville, Florida

  4. Thank you for your comments on this issue Marjorie. As a Glaswegian I’m reeling that this precious building is in ruins again and fearful that another costly and difficult resurrection is out of reach. I hope not.

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