Rare chairs made for the painter and decorator friend of Charles Rennie Mackintosh are to go under the hammer at auction next week.

Two pairs of stained oak dining chairs, specially designed by Mackintosh for his friend William Douglas, are to be auctioned live online. The unique pieces of furniture will form part of Lyon & Turnbull’s specialist ‘Design Since 1860’ sale on Thursday April 22.

The two pairs of chairs, originally part of a set of six and upholstered in horsehair fabric, were created by Mackintosh in 1910 for William Douglas, house-painter and wallpaper hanger.

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Mackintosh employed the decorator for various projects including Hous’hill in Nitshill, Miss Cranston’s home, the designer had created interiors for her Tearooms in Glasgow.

Douglas met Mackintosh in Glasgow after moving from Blairgowrie in Perthshire with his widowed mother. He built his business in the city, working from premises in West George Street.

By 1910 Charles Rennie Mackintosh was in the last phase of creativity as an architect and designer in Glasgow. He completed the second phase of the Glasgow School of Art the year before, perhaps his greatest work.

Charles Rennie Mackintosh designed chairs will go up for auction

Charles Rennie Mackintosh designed chairs will go up for auction

John Mackie, a Director at Lyon & Turnbull, and a specialist in Design from 1860-1945 said: “The sale represents a rare opportunity to purchase scarce original furniture designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Only six of these chairs were made and their design demonstrates Mackintosh’s skill in transforming traditional vernacular forms into something new."

Bidding for the chairs will start at £15,000 for each pair.

Original pieces by the international design icon are becoming increasingly rare. Just last October a bedside cabinet by Mackintosh was sold by Lyon & Turnbull for £250,000 after an intense international bidding battle, well over the estimated sale price of £100,000 to £150,000.

The famed Scottish architect and designer devised the mahogany cabinet in 1916 for the only house he designed in England – 78 Derngate in Northampton, now a visitor attraction.

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With its angular lines and minimal decoration, it marks a departure from the curved and stylised motifs that characterised much of his earlier work.

His legacy is said to be the Glasgow School of Art, which was recently ravaged by two devastating fires. It was completed in 1909 and is considered to be unique by architectural experts who pointed to the fact that for many years it was a working art school as well as a work of art.

However, in May 2014, the building was destroyed by a fire. It destroyed the Mackintosh library The blaze, which destroyed about 10% of the building, including the Mackintosh library, broke out on Friday 23 May.

A second blaze broke out at the building in June 2018. Flames ripped through it after it caught fire on a Friday night.

The blaze spread to nearby buildings, including the Campus nightclub and O2 ABC music venue, which suffered "extensive damage".

Mackintosh's first public commission – a building for the Glasgow Herald 1895 – is today home to The Lighthouse, Scotland's Centre for Design and Architecture.

Scotland Street School, Glasgow designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

Scotland Street School, Glasgow designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

He designed the Scotland Street School in Tradeston, on the south bank of the River Clyde, which later became a museum telling the story of 100 years of education, from the late 19th century to the late 20th century.

The striking Queen's Cross Church on Garscube Road – the only church Mackintosh designed which was ever built – is home to the society dedicated to protecting and promoting his legacy.

Considered to be Scotland's greatest designer, Mackintosh was born in Glasgow on June 7, 1868, and in 1883 he enrolled as a part-time student at Glasgow School of Art.

Such was his potential that in 1888 he joined the office of the noted Glasgow architect, John Honeyman. The firm later became known as Honeyman and Keppie, and by 1901 Mackintosh had risen to the position of partner.

In 1923, he and his wife Margaret Macdonald relocated to the South of France, where he turned his considerable talents to watercolour paintings.

He died in a London nursing-home on December 10, 1928 following a diagnosis of tongue cancer.