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GALLERY OF MODERN ART

WHERE IS IT? In the centre of Royal Exchange Square, just off Buchannan Street, a few yards from George Square.

The gallery is situated in a townhouse built for Tobacco Lord William Cunninghame in 1778, yet GoMA is one of Glasgow’s newest exhibition spaces, opening in 1996.

In the past it has served as a branch of the Royal Bank of Scotland, a library and the Royal Exchange. For the latter, it was renovated in the mid 19th Century by famous Glasgow architect David Hamilton. The gallery features themed exhibits all year round, as well as housing pieces by famous post-modern artists such as Andy Warhol and David Hockney, and Scottish artists such as John Bellany and Ken Currie. As well as an exhibition space, GoMA is also a learning centre, with regular classes, including a Saturday morning one for families, and free internet access.

 

The museum is perhaps most famous for the equestrian statue of the Duke of Wellington that stands proudly outside. The head is almost always decorated with a traffic cone, which has over the years become an unofficial symbol of the city. Despite many attempts by Glasgow City Council to remove them, traffic cones always find a way on top. More recently, they have been used for marketing and decorative purposes; for example, in the summer of 2012 it was painted gold to honour the Scottish athletes who had won gold at the London Olympics Games.