The Miller's of Glasgow Art Shop say fierce competition and the action of the taxman have made it impossible to continue to own and run the firm they set up in 1834,
Plagued by supermarkets and online discounters, the shop, the oldest continuously trading in the city centre, remains open. But it has lost its 179-year-long link to the family of its founder Robert Miller, who set up the firm.
"We are very sorry to tell you that Miller's Art Shop, renowned throughout Glasgow and way beyond for nearly 180 years, is now in administration," the family said in a statement on the shop's website.
"The shop is currently trading at 28 Stockwell Street, Glasgow but we cannot supply any internet orders meantime.
"We are sorry that a combination of the internet and large chain stores - to say nothing of the supermarkets and HMRC - have made it impossible for Millers to continue.
"The family are hopeful that a buyer can be found. Thank you for making our many, many years in business so enjoyable."
Miller's has been a Glasgow institution for generations of artists. It became the oldest retailer in the city after John Smith and Son, the equally legendary bookseller founded in 1751 gave up its St Vincent Street HQ.
It was until recently run by Paul Miller and his wife Susie who celebrated the company's 175th anniversary in 2009.
At the time Mr Miller expressed deep pride in the company's longevity. "I think it is quite an achievement for the firm, and the whole family. And during its history the firm has changed a few times, as has the location."
More than half of the company's custom has historically come from students at Glasgow's thriving Art School.
Artist Avril Paton, 72, famous for her pictures of Glasgow tenements, said she loved the old Miller's, when it was based in Argyle Street.
"I can still smell the paint and the turps of the old shop," she said last night. "It was a marvellous place."
Nobody at the store was available for comment. Nor was anybody at BDO, the accountants appointed to run the business.