Menu card from Miss Cranston's Cafe goes to Kelvingrove

  • 27 March 2007

The Art Fund has helped Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow to acquire an important piece of Scottish design - a menu card designed by Frances MacNair.

It was purchased with a £6,000 grant from The Art Fund.

Frances Macdonald MacNair was the younger sister of Margaret Macdonald, who, along with Charles Rennie Mackintosh and James Herbert McNair was key in developing the art and design work now known as the ‘Glasgow Style’. The group were known as ‘The Four’.

The menu card was designed for Miss Cranston’s Red Lion Café at Glasgow’s third international exhibition – the Scottish Exhibition of National History, Art and Industry – in 1911. It was drawn in pencil and watercolour on vellum, and the design is based on emblems associated with Scottish national identity - the thistle and a single rampant red lion derived from the royal banner of Scotland.

The acquisition is the latest object in a series now in the civic collection that once were part of the tearooms of the legendary Miss Cranston, who championed the idea of the artistic tearoom and for whom Charles Rennie Mackintosh and George Walton were key designers.

The menu card will be on display at Kelvingrove - in the Mackintosh and Glasgow Style gallery - until late July.

Related Links:

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

Glasgow City Council