Page 21 - Studio International - November 1968
P. 21

Light as a creative medium—photographs    figures far in excess of reality of the damage students
                                                    wanted                                    have done, then what they have spent in punitively
                                                     Dear Sir,                                maintaining their authority will be seen to be at least
                                                      Gyorgy Kepes has been working for some time now   disproportionately large. I will be surprised if the
                                                     on a book on light as a creative medium. He is   actions of certain aldermen are not called into
                                                     collecting black-and-white photographs of works in   question by the ratepayers they have been seeking
                                                    this field, to illustrate some of the points he wants to   to protect by using liberal portions of the Borough's
                                                     make. He would like to have some material from   finance.
                                                     England and has asked me to collect it for him.   I am grieved when I think of the thousands of
                                                     Any artists exploring this territory who are interested   pounds the Council has wasted. In my department I
                                                     in contributing illustrations for Kepes's book should   may not give a free tube of paint or a free brush to
           Correspondence                           send the photographs to me at 12 Belsize Park   needy students—yet the Education Committee can
                                                     Gardens, NW3, together with a description or full   sanction expenditure upon the following educational
                                                    caption.                                  necessities :
                                                                                Jasia Reichardt   Uniformed guards and Alsatian dogs—one of which
                                                                                             leapt upon me while I was in the company of Mr
                                                    Utopian environments                     Tony Smythe, the secretary of the National Council
                                                     Dear Sir,                               for Civil Liberties—thus invalidating the Council's
                                                      I would like to find architects and artists who have   claim that the dogs were under strict control. The
                                                    made models or designs for Utopian environments.   cutting off of the main electricity supply—and the
                                                     Any information, photographs or expressions of   subsequent rejoining of it the next day—necessitating
                                                    interest should be sent to Jasia Reichardt at the   the employment of eight men for two days. The area
                                                     Institute of Contemporary Arts, Nash House, 12 Carl-  manager assured me of the high cost of such action.
                                                    ton Terrace, London, SW1.                The later redirection of the utilities to the college—the
                                                                        Yours sincerely,     cutting off of all telephone connections in anticipa-
                                                                                 Rolf Wedewer   tion of students attempting to re-occupy the college.
                                                    Director                                 The erection of 12-in. spikes radiating in bristling
                                                     Leverkusen Museum                        clutches from every salient feature of the college
                                                    Germany                                   building. The sending home of administrative staff,
                                                                                              clerical and technical, on full pay. The re-organization
                                                    Cost of the Hornsey revolution
                                                    Dear Sir,
                                                     May I, as a member of the staff of Hornsey College
                                                    of Art, be permitted to express my gratitude to Pro-
                                                    fessor Lord Queensberry, whose letter to The Times
                                                    on September 26 questioned the quite unnecessary
                                                    system of assessment employed by the college
                                                    authorities to evaluate the work of students of the
                                                     Not only is there general feeling among the staff that
                                                    the present unusual assessment is wasteful, but there
                                                    is much resentment among those of us whose pro-
                                                    fessional responsibilities towards our students have
                                                    been so rudely and unexpectedly disregarded by those
                                                    concerned with the introduction of outside assessors.
                                                     There seems to be no valid reason educationally for
                                                    this decision since each department should be at the
                                                    end of the year well versed regarding the progress of
                                                    each student and ought to be in such close contact
                                                    with its students to enable a report to be made out
                                                    to the grant authorities (if indeed it is at all necessary)
                                                    with the minimum of bureaucratic effort.
                                                      It is difficult for many of us to interpret the actions of
                                                    the Haringey Education Committee as other than
                                                    those of a body obsessed with political considerations   75 years ago
                                                    far removed from the sphere of education.   At the Egyptian Hall, the two leaders of the little
                                                      Before the assessment idea was currently being   Dudley Gallery Society, Mr Severn and Mr Stevens,
                                                     used as an excuse for not opening the college—it   are even better contrasted this year than before— the
                                                    appears to have been the Commissions now under   one with his carefully tender and cheerful style, so cer-
                                                    the distinguished chairmanship of Lord Longford,   tain to look well on the walls of a drawing room; the
                                                    who himself has expressed the view that there appears   other with his brown tones, broad treatment, and free
                                                    to be no reason why the college should not open in   swing of the brush, that produces work almost equally
                                                    a good atmosphere—one well-known alderman pub-  certain to find its way to the study or the dining room.
                                                     licly expressed the view that things could not return   From 'Lesser shows of June', by Edwin J. Ellis.
                                                    to normal—i.e. the re-opening of the college at the
                                                     correct date, since he had not received the report of   50 years ago
                                                    the Commission. A day or so previously he had   As regards the art of the year the general observation
                                                    stated, again publicly, that he could not wait for the   may be made that it is free from artificial embellish-
                                                     report of the Commission before taking decisions   ment, sensationalism or levity of thought and purpose.
                                                     regarding the future of they college.   There are no war distractions, but evidence of a genuine
                                                      On no occasion have the authorities accepted that   desire to present the true and beautiful apart from the
                                                    the student action has been a most valuable contri-  transient influences of the time. Among the veterans
                                                     bution to the evolution of further education in this   Mr Robert Alexander attains a high quality of art in
                                                     country and have chosen to brand the dispute as   his sympathetic rendering of a huntsman visiting his
                                                     political and to accuse the students of doing material   dog-kennel, while Mr Lawton Wingate's three small
                                                     damage to the building. It seems that when the   landscapes show his skill in interpreting Nature in her
                                                     account is published of the cost of the sit-in unless   most sensitive moods.
                                                     the Haringey Education Committee can produce   From a review of the Royal Scottish Academy.
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