You might think that during the last two decades the Charles Rennie Mackintosh industry had left no remunerative stone unturned. Log on to www. justmackintosh. co. uk and you can buy a 'Rennie Mackintosh-inspired Salt & Pepper set', a 16piece cutlery set, and an Argyle Bread Crock ('in deep pink'), among much else. But largely overlooked in this continuing Mackintosh-fest have been the watercolours which he painted in south-west France in the last years of his life.
Some appear marginally in the many books on Mackintosh, while a larger selection was well-reproduced in the Hunterian Art Gallery's The Chronycle (sic) - a rather poignant selection of Mackintosh's letters to his wife Margaret. But now, in an exhibition at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh, until 5 February, there's a chance to see almost all of the 44 works Mackintosh painted between 1923-27. The catalogue includes an essay by co-curator Philip Long, who argues that 'the paintings develop in a way out of his architectural work'. Meanwhile Mackintosh's Glasgow School of Art has embarked on an £8.4 million restoration, following a large lottery grant earlier this year (www. natgalscot. ac. uk).
Both the principles and the nitty-gritty of restoration/conservation feature in the series of masterclasses which the Scottish Centre for Conservation Studies at Edinburgh College of Art holds in the first months of each year. The next series runs from 12 January to 16 March and includes Ola Wedebrunn of Docomomo International on 'Renewing Modern Movement Technology', John McAslan on 'Adaptive Conservation for Modern Movement Buildings', and David Yeomans on 'Historic Buildings: The Structural Engineer's Dilemma' (details 0131 221 6072).
Over the last few years, the AR Awards for Emerging Architecture, which are the basis of both an exhibition and an issue of The Architectural Review, have attracted many highquality entries. This year's show is at the RIBA, 66 Portland Place, London W1, from 7 December to 28 February, with the winners - who are announced on 6 December - appearing in a lecture series early in the new year (www. arplus. com).