Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Devil? No, delight.

I've been focusing on the detail today. One nice thing about travel is that it makes you look with fresh eyes at your home surroundings when you get back, and also you look upwards a lot more, which mostly you don't, day to day. This morning was all about looking up, to study architecture and design, and though Glasgow can claim many stars, it's Charles Rennie Mackintosh who takes top billing.

First I went to the reconstruction of his and wife Margaret Macdonald's home at the Hunterian Art Gallery, which is just delightful: light and delicate and super-elegant. Also totally impractical - white carpets, very low and straight (and supremely uncomfortable) chairs, and limited storage. But beautiful!

Then I did a Glasgow Style walking tour from the sadly recently-scorched School of Art (designed by RM) conducted by two architecture students, looking at some of the city's many glorious buildings. Unlike everyone else scuttling round the streets, we were looking up, at scrolls and balustrades and caryatids, noting themes and picking out the repetitions. It was illuminating.

The Riverside Museum is also full of marvellous and superbly well-presented detail - of which, more another time. Finally, at Cail Bruich, there was great finesse with tiny detail on the 5-course tasting menu which climaxed in the dessert. We had a long wait for it, thanks to a collapse in the kitchen, and received a special compensatory pre-dessert (tch) - but finally it came: individual rhubarb crumble soufflés in little copper pots. Masterpieces of airy, scented froth! (Which were far too tempting to hang around photographing, so you'll have to make do with another sort of froth, on the crab starter.)

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