The Golden Age of Sauchiehall Street: March 1923 – Decoration of a Smoke-Room – Pettigrew and Stephens – Professor Maurice Greiffenhagen, R.A., Commissioned

An article on page six of The Glasgow Herald, on Tuesday the 27th of March, 1923, reads:




It is a matter of regret that the art of mural decoration, which offers such wide scope and comprehensive

possibilities to the imaginative artist, should be so little encouraged at the present time. A distinguished

authority on the subject of decorative art, however, has expressed his firm conviction that a new era, not

only in mural decoration but in architecture itself, is dawning. Concrete and steel, he thinks, will after all

be our salvation, and will give the decorator of interiors, whether of public or domestic buildings, his great

chance. It would appear as if this prophecy is about to be realised, in one instance at least, in Glasgow.

Messrs Pettigrew and Stephens (Limited) have commissioned Professor Maurice Greiffengahen, R.A, to

execute seven large panels, which are to be fixed on the walls of the men’s café which the firm will open

shortly in their extended premises facing Bath Street. The panels, which have now been completed, are at

present on view in the gallery of Glasgow Art Club before being placed in their permanent position. While

Professor Greiffenhagen has chosen classical subjects for the panels he has not followed the classical

episodes in all their conventionalities. His aim has been rather to produce highly decorative effects which

will add beauty and dignity to the apartment. In this he has been highly successful. For the most part he has

used strong primary colour, which, skilfully worked in harmony, give rich and gorgeous effects. The fine

balance of composition displayed in each of the panels heightens the feeling of rich beauty. The titles of the

seven panels are as follow: – ‘Circe,’ ‘Artemis,’ ‘Discobolos,’ ‘Aphrodite,’ ‘Bacchanal,’ ‘Atalanta,’ and ‘Harvest.'”



George Fairfull-Smith, October 2022.