Guest blog by Leila Jones of WMGlobal
Glasgow is a must-see for any street art fan, with some of the most Instagrammed murals in the country. Talented artists such as Smug and Rogue Oner are decorating the city with inspiring, colourful pieces. Over 12,700 street art posts have been shared in Glasgow, but which pieces of art are most popular on the social network?
1. Saint Mungo by Smug – located on High Street
This mural depicts Glasgow’s patron saint, Mungo, in modern-day clothes. It interprets the story of Mungo in the 6th century, when he prayed over a dying bird that some boys had been throwing stones at, and it flew away.
2. Fellow Glasgow Residents by Smug – Ingram Street car park
This mural was commissioned by Glasgow City Council to celebrate some of the wildlife that you will see in Glasgow’s green spaces, such as squirrels, foxes and highland cows.
3. Crazy Cat Lady by Rogue Oner – located on Sauchiehall Street
This fun, innocent artwork was commissioned to brighten up a tired area of Sauchiehall Street. The subject is a lady so crazy about cats that she even has Grumpy Cat wallpaper and feline-themed slippers.
4. Saint Enoch and Child by Smug – located on High Street
Complimenting the Saint Mungo artwork, this mural is an interpretation of Glasgow’s founding story. St Thenue/Enoch is pictured cradling her child, St Kentigern/Mungo. The image is sweet and moving, which partly contributes to its Instagram popularity – with several Instagrammers stating that it reminds them of their children.
5. Glasgow’s Tiger by Klingatron and Art Pistol – Clyde Street
This popular piece was a collaboration by Klingatron and Art Pistol, replacing the former Tiger Beer mural which was commissioned in 2010. The new tiger was initially met with scepticism by residents for being too literal but is now much loved. At the start of September, this mural was mindlessly vandalised, much to the upset of local residents.
You can see all of Glasgow’s top 10 most Instagrammed street art here and see what is most popular in other cities around the North and Scotland.
The first deliverable of the City Deal Avenues project is now complete. Sauchiehall Street, between Charing Cross and Rose Street, has been transformed – and has also been a useful demonstrator project for this new approach to the public realm and placemaking in Glasgow city centre.
The City Deal Avenues project is a £115 million programme aimed at improving the public realm throughout the city centre. Despite two significant fires affecting the construction programme, this first phase has been a great success. It has provided new high-quality space for pedestrians, a segregated cycle lane, benches and 26 new trees, adding some well-needed greenery to the area. The works have broadened pavements enabling bars and cafes to sprawl on to the street, contributing to the liveliness of the city centre.
The aesthetic of the street has significantly improved. It now has a continental look and feel, which makes the avenue almost unrecognisable from before. See below for images – we hope you are as pleased as we are with the outcome!
Glasgow City Council Leader Susan Aitken said, “The completion of Sauchiehall Avenue is a milestone in the rebirth of this famous Glasgow thoroughfare. It is the first stage in the biggest reimaging and remodelling of our city-centre streets since the pedestrianisation of Buchanan Street 40 years ago.”
“We have improved Sauchiehall Street’s overall look and feel. By helping it adapt to the changes affecting high streets everywhere, we’ve created a catalytic physical environment which will bring social and economic benefits.”
“It is now a street where pedestrians, cyclists and vulnerable road users have priority over the car in a safer, cleaner, more vibrant space. The street is now more attractive to both visitors and investors.”
You only have seven days left to have your say on the St Enoch District Regeneration Framework (DRF) as public consultation ends 6 September. You can download the St Enoch District Regeneration Framework document here.
There are seven themes identified, a number of strategic aims and project activities for the area. There are two questions that we would like as much feedback as we can on this DRF. Firstly, do you think we have identified the right priorities for the area? Secondly, do you agree with the actions on how to deliver the DRF? If not, please let us know what you think.
The themes identified from this DRF vary, from activating the riverside, to how we design streets and spaces, making them more pedestrian-friendly, to a shift towards a more efficient, healthy and sustainable mobility and for the ambition to create a vibrant area. Feedback will be fed into the proposals before they are finally approved and become a set of actions which need to be delivered – so please have your say.
Have your say at Glasgow City Council’s Consultation Hub.
Great news! The Broomielaw District Regeneration Framework (DRF) which was developed by a multi-disciplinary team appointed by the Council and led by Glasgow-based architecture practice, Austin-Smith:Lord, working in collaboration with leading international architects and urbanists, MVRDV won a Masterplanning Award at last night’s Scottish Design Awards.
This is a really encouraging endorsement of the DRF which the Council approved early this year. As part of the City Centre Strategy, nine distinct Districts were identified and Broomielaw is the first of the four which Austin-Smith:Lord and MVRDV have developed. The St Enoch DRF is out for public consultation at the moment. The consultation closes on 6 September so if you haven’t already done so please make the time to do so. The remaining two DRFs, Central and Blythswood will come out for consultation later this year.
In the meantime, work continues on planning the delivery of the actions outlined in the Broomielaw DRF.
To view the Broomielaw DRF please select the links below:
Broomielaw-DRF [9.18MB PDF]
Broomielaw DRF Executive Summary[2.27MB PDF]
The Glasgow City Centre Mural Trail has some new additions! The most recent artworks can be found in Midland Street, underneath Glasgow Central Station opposite the Arches. The latest installations were created by artist James Klinge (aka Klingatron) and include three portraits. Initial reaction to these murals has been very positive and a number of publications have already featured them. Of course, these aren’t James’ first works to be showcased within the City Centre Mural Trail and eagle-eyed observers will already be familiar with his previous murals which include such local favourites as, Glasgow’s Tiger, Crocodile Glesga, as well as his Study of a Woman in Black series. We are sure that the installations in Midland Street will become just as popular.
Consequently, it’s perhaps no surprise that the Glasgow City Centre Mural Trail continues to gather interest from all over the globe, with the Australian Gourmet Traveler recently bringing the project to the attention of its readers. The magazine used the murals as an example of the unique nature of Glasgow’s offer and encouraged its readers to explore the city and its vibrant artwork.
As part of the annual Glasgow Doors Open Day programme, Glasgow City Council will once again be offering free guided walking tours of some of the murals contained within the City Centre Mural Trail. This year, these activities will be taking place on the 21st & 22nd of September. Interest in these events is always high so make sure to book early to avoid any disappointment. For more information about these tours please visit the Glasgow Doors Open Days website.
We hope to see you there!
The St Enoch area is often referred to as being car-dominated, secluded, as well as lacking in street life and activity. Argyle Street and St Enoch Square attract the highest footfall for the area, however, there is scope for improvement. There is also a lack of green spaces throughout the area, with many consultees observing that many of the streets are unattractive. It is imperative that this area, where the heart of the city meets its river, becomes a more prominent destination and to become more attractive, additional quality public spaces are needed. Consequently, this will attract new investment and will entice new inhabitants.
To achieve this, key streets like Argyle Street, Ballater Street, Jamaica Street and the quays will be revived as attractive public spaces with diverse characteristics. Moreover, one or two new routes will be made through St Enoch Shopping Centre, allowing pedestrians to walk directly from the city centre to the river quay, revitalising the currently overlooked areas of St Enoch.
In addition, the project aims to create an events space in the heart of St Enoch with the aspiration that this will become a new visitor attraction to the area. The City Centre currently has various spaces used for events. However, there would appear to be a demand for a more flexible, contemporary event space that relieves pressure on George Square. A new event plaza (as well as the River Park) could accommodate seasonal and commercial events including Christmas fairs/markets, art fairs or street sports tournaments. This will allow George Square to become less commercialised and dedicated to civic ceremonies, public gatherings and protests.
Now you can have your say:
The St Enoch DRF formally went live on 14th June and remains available for comment until 6th September. You can access the document and the GCC Consultation Hub via the following links:
Draft St Enoch Regeneration Framework Document
Glasgow City Council’s Consultation Hub
Please let us know what you think.