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Old Mansion House, Gorbals

Burrell Collection Photo Library

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Old Mansion House, Gorbals

Court of Old Mansion, Main Street, Gorbals, 1848 by Thomas Fairbairn (1820-1884).

The painting depicts the courtyard of the Elphinstone Mansion, built for Sir George Elphinstone on land he acquired in 1601. He died in 1634 and his estate was sold to pay his debts: the house was converted to accomodate shops, flats and a public house. The building was demolished in the early 1870s by the City Improvement Trust and the Citizens' Theatre was subsequently built on the site. Main Street has been renamed Gorbals Street.

Born in Campsie, Fairbairn is known as a landscape painter in oil, watercolour and chalk. As a young man he worked as a shop assistant with a firm of dyers while studying art at evening classes in Glasgow with tutors such as John A Gilfillan and Andrew Donaldson. He went on to paint a series of watercolours in 1844-1849 depicting scenes in Glasgow, and they were published in 1849 and reprinted in 1884. He moved to Hamilton in 1850.

Reference: 765.89.251

Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Museums

artists, babies, backstairs, balconies, chairs, Citizens' Theatre, City Improvement Trust, Elphinstone Mansion, furniture, stools, washtubs, watercolours, women

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