The Glasgow Society of Lady Artists was founded in 1882 by eight female students of the Glasgow School of Art with the aim of according due recognition to women in the field of art.
The eight founding members were successful business women, active in many enterprises, and by 1895 had accumulated sufficient funds to allow the purchase of a house at No. 5 Blythswood Square. It had the distinction of being the first Women Artists' Residential Club in Great Britain and was known as The Glasgow Society of Lady Artists' Club. By 1897 the partnership of George Henry Walton and Fred Rowntree had designed and constructed a gallery for the Club's fourteenth Annual Exhibition.
A disastrous fire on 27 May 1901 destroyed the Gallery and pictures for a special Summer Exhibition mounted in conjunction with the International Exhibition at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. The Gallery was rebuilt to the design of George Henry Walton and the first exhibition was held on 25 October 1902.
In 1907 a Decoration Committee commissioned Charles Rennie Mackintosh to carry out certain interior work and the striking black pedimented neo-classical front door. The Club thrived over the following 64 years until 1971 when it was sold to the Scottish Arts Council.
Some members were determined to revive the Society, which duly happened in 1975 when it was renamed The Glasgow Society of Women Artists with a Centenary Exhibition being held in the Collins Gallery in 1982.