Gallery of Modern Art

Photo: Jon Jardine

David Hamilton

1832

Category A Listed

First impressions of this building are of a classical temple, strictly adhering to an ancient formula. The grand pedimented portico is topped by a huge cupola. The pediment itself, which was plain, is now embellished by a mirrored sculpture by the French artist Nikki de St Phalle. However the building was built around an 18th-century tobacco lord’s mansion, extended front, back and at the rooftop. Originally Glasgow’s financial exchange, it later housed the city’s first telephone exchange and more recently Stirling’s Library, which now occupies the basement. Its inspired conversion to house Glasgow’s impressive modern collection ensured that this dramatic and important building remains in public use.