Falling in love with Glasgow

I began the day taking some quiet photos of Georges Square while few people were there and before it got rockin’ later in the day. Then, I headed to the Gallery of Modern Art to see some great stuff. I love museums and art galleries, and teh UK is fortunate enough to have Trusts set up so that there are no entry fees – just donations from those who can afford something. I love the feeling of being able to contribute what small part I can in keeping this accessible for so many. Great art available for so many – how lucky for those who live in the UK.

There were some really interesting video installations (no photos allowed) that caught my eye. One was by a local artist, who had been in Sweden and taken a steady cam of youth in a circle at an international school – it caught lots of great expressions; of self-consciousness, of laughter, of sadness, of mystery – these are the kids that follow behind us and will take us to the next places – there was a story behind every person that you just wanted to sit and listen to. It was silent, and the stories were in their interactions and expressions, rather than the words they spoke.

Another installation was from a woman who crossed a border in Israel to go to school every day. She had videotaped her feet one day for the 2 km journey, but the border patrol had taken her tape away. So, she hid the camera in her bag and caught 10 days worth of footage that way. It was fascinating to see the road she walked, the rain around her and the people who had to make the same journey, some who could barely make it a few steps, but had to make it the whole 2 km on a daily basis. Took the idea of walking a mile in someone else’s shoes to a whole new level. Very profound.

After my time at the gallery seeing lots more, I headed to Glasgow Cathedral – I had been told it was not to be missed. It was beautiful. The memorials to all sorts of people inside – people who had been involved in the church, to fallen soldiers in wars… stained glass memorials and verses of scripture… pews dedicated to families…

Glasgow Cathedral

 

I wandered around and just took it all in. So grand.

Across the way from the Cathedral is St. Mungo Museum of Religion – it showcases many religions in the world and artefacts from them. And in 2002, in light of the attacks of September 11, a Forum of Faith was set up to create better understanding and to create harmony. And many key people signed a declaration of tolerance to this. What a beautiful way to take something ugly and create something good.

Glasgow3

 

They had a really interesting display (photos didn’t turn out well, so you will have to use your imagination). The outside displays were the main themes from birth – death for many major faiths around the world – what they believe, how they celebrate or commemorate these times and rituals. And the inside displays displayed key beliefs of major religions and key themes. It’s amazing how much many of them have in common, and yet how different they can still be. It was really well researched, well thought out and informative. I love that in a museum.

After so much education, I was ready for another break and made my way back to the city centre. Alas, the lure of the pipes dragged me in again.

Glasgow2

 

This is a selection of bands chosen to play in the square –from Australia, France and Canada. As well, there was a great ceidlh band from West Ireland that played for awhile inside the tent and that got the whole place going. Nothing like lots of great music to fire up a crowd. And it was all free, so any passer-by was free to just join in! I hung out with my dorm mates that night in the room – we were all just needing a night to relax and catch up on some sleep – so it was lights out by midnight. After lots of 8 bedded-room hostels with little sleep, it was great to only have 3 roomies, all who needed sleep more than I did J

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