Charles Rennie Mackintosh, one of Scotland’s best known architects, is widely recognised as one of the most influential designers of his generation. However, a less known figure emerged in Glasgow decades earlier who was to have a profound effect not only on Scottish and international contemporaries, but also on the generations that followed. Scottish-born Daniel Cottier worked closely with contemporaries such as William Leiper, predominantly as a stained glass artist, decorator and furniture designer during the second half of the 19th Century. While his designs contributed to some of the most stunning building interiors in Scotland, he spent much of his career abroad and became a major influence in international circles, also as an art dealer and promoter of younger artists and designers.
Works are well underway to conserve Dowanhill Church, Glasgow, now Cottiers Theatre, the only one of three major Scottish churches famously decorated by Cottier to survive from this period. A recent Historic Scotland publication , the first of two volumes, explores the life, work and influence of Daniel Cottier and his contemporary William Leiper, setting the hugely significant surviving interior of Dowanhill Church into a broader context. Volume two of this series will be published on completion of the Dowanhill Church project and will document the conservation works carried out to this important interior decorative scheme.
Daniel Cottier was one of 19th Century Scotland’s leading lights; a designer of enormous talent and influence internationally, he has ironically been much overlooked in his native country. Here are some pages from the book within which art historian Juliet Kinchin, curator of design at the Museum of Modern Art New York describes the importance of Cottier and his circle. A selection of pages of from the book showing the decoration, stained glass and organ in Dowanhill Church and other interiors associated with Cottier can also be viewed on these pages.