In order to assemble artwork that would stand up to the striking architecture of the Townhouse, we worked with acclaimed Art Curator, Sigrid Kirk, to select pieces that would elevate our members-only areas and public spaces whilst thematically exploring the rich history of the building.
Although best known for its 200 years as the flagship for the Bank of Scotland, the Townhouse building’s industrial history traces back much further, with the British Linen Headquarters occupying the space throughout the 18th century. With much of the Townhouse’s architectural restoration honouring the bank’s legacy, the art that adorns the walls pays tribute to this earlier history of linen manufacture and the women who drove its success.
IN THE NOTE BURNING ROOM (MEMBERS ONLY) (Pictured below)
Linen and its production thematically imbues much of the art that embellishes the Townhouse. This is expressed perhaps most explicitly in Gaia Fugazza’s four-panel painting found in The Note Burning Room. Fugazza’s work famously explores the troubled relationship between humans and the natural environment, portraying characters interacting with a natural and technological world, that in this piece depicts the stages of linen production, featuring women picking and combing the material in vivid gold, white and blue. This four-part painting was made on wood, then carved, burned, waxed and painted with self-made mineral paints, emulating a medieval painting style. Symbolically, the wood-panelled boardroom where this celebration of female craft now hangs was previously emblazoned with portraits of the male board members who would predominantly occupy the space.