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  • The Decorative Arts Society 1850 to the Present

    The Arts and Crafts Movement and British Schools of ArtAuthor(s): George RawsonSource: The Journal of the Decorative Arts Society 1850 - the Present, No. 28, ARTS &CRAFTS ISSUE (2004), pp. 28-55Published by: The Decorative Arts Society 1850 to the PresentStable URL: .Accessed: 14/06/2014 06:53

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  • The Arts and Crafts Movement

    and British Schools of Art

    George Rawson

    In magazine, illustrated


    review The the

    Studio leading

    describing , published


    the a craft lavishly



    magazine, The Studio , published a lavishly illustrated review describing the craft and

    design work across a wide range of different media in thirty-one leading art schools in Britain and Ireland (Fig. I).1 The title of the

    publication, Arts & Crafts , is interesting, in that, even if the term had existed thirty years previously, it would at that time have been

    inappropriate as a description of the practice of the country's schools of art. A London gallery- goer visiting the first show of the Arts and Crafts Exhibition Society in 1888 would have noticed a vast difference between it and the annual exhibition, at South Kensington, of

    prize works from the schools of art. Walking around the former show at the New Gallery in

    Regent Street, which was an attempt by the

    newly formed Arts and Crafts Exhibition

    Society to display decorative art and craft work in the kind of exhibition setting previously associated with fine art, he would have seen

    tapestries, wall papers, cabinets, examples of metalwork and jewellery; and could have attended demonstrations of different crafts. At the South Kensington Museum, on the other

    hand, the schools of art were only showing works on paper: some of them designs; but

    many of them studies from casts of historical

    ornament, from the antique figure and from

    nature; along with a few plaster casts of three dimensional designs. This situation had come

    about, partly as a result of the policies of those who ran the art educational system but partly in opposition to their best intentions; and the introduction of workshop training in schools of

    art, from the early 1890s onwards, was to a certain extent a fulfilment of the aspirations that British art educationalists had held but failed to realize, several decades earlier. The Arts and Crafts Movement, in so far as it

    engaged with education, was able to make some impact in bringing about workshop training and on the way in which it was conducted. Its introduction, however, was as

    much, if not more, a result of changing commercial conditions which had brought about a shift in perception amongst industrialists about the function of design education.


    Of the many areas that the Arts and Crafts Movement and the schools of art had in common the most significant was that both were primarily concerned with design and decorative art rather than with fine art. Despite their nomenclature, the earliest 'schools of art' had been set up between 1837 and 1851, as 'schools of design'. The term 'design' being generally used to refer to the application of

    ornament, their purpose was to improve the aesthetic quality of British goods for the home and foreign markets. The House of Commons Select Committee on Arts in their connexion

    [sic] with Manufactures, whose deliberations between 1835 and 1836 had resulted in the establishment of the schools, recommended that: 'not theoretical instruction only, but the direct practical application of arts to

    FIG. 1 Title page of the Studio's 1916 review of United Kingdom Schools of Art.


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  • manufactures, ought to be deemed an essential element' and to further this had recommended that schools should be established in industrial

    centres, in order to concentrate their efforts on the staple industries of their localities.2 The schools of design ran a curriculum which was

    exclusively oriented towards the training of the

    designer or art workman who was already in

    employment, or who intended to take up a career in industrial or decorative art. Moreover, the managers of the schools, in grappling with the problem of how design could best be

    taught, during the twenty years after 1837, had conducted several experiments in the training of students, not only in the making of designs but in addressing the problems of their execution in the material. William Dyce (1806-1864), who was Director of the schools from 1838 to 1943, had argued that it was insufficient to train a designer without giving him an understanding of the materials and

    processes for which he was designing.^ For

    Dyce this could mean workshop training: he had installed a Jacquard loom and an instructor at the Head School of Design at Somerset House in London to teach silk weaving which was carried on nearby, in Spitalfields.4 It could also take the form of theoretical knowledge, and to this end Dyce had instituted a series of lectures on different industrial processes.5 Dyce's successor, Charles Heath Wilson

    (1809-1882), who ran the schools between 1843 and 1847, whilst abandoning the lecture

    programme, had also, initially, been interested in practical courses. He began a fresco painting class; appointed a teacher of wood engraving,

    one of the few artistic occupations open to

    women, to the Female School of Design; employed a teacher of wood carving; and

    planned to introduce classes in china and glass painting.6 By 1845, however, after only two

    years in post, Wilson was to abandon practical training. According to Wilson this decision had been brought about for two reasons. Firstly, he had come to believe that it was uneconomic to

    provide in an educational setting the necessary practical expertise and the range of models and

    machinery.^ Dyce's experiment with the

    Jacquard loom had been abandoned because too few students had been interested. Secondly, there was opposition from some influential manufacturers on the committees of the

    growing number of provincial schools of

    design. These were afraid of competition in the

    production of designs from the schools, and were opposed to financing the training of workers who would be employed by other businesses. This went along with a suspicion of central government interference in local affairs; and the attitude that it was inappropriate for Parliament to spend taxpayers' money on

    subsidising trade, which government support for technical training was construed as doing.8 As many students in the schools were already working in manufacturing and were gaining a

    familiarity with processes and materials in the commercial workshop, Wilson arrived at the

    view, which would become that tacitly held by the art educational establishment from the late 1850s to the 1890s, that schools of design should see themselves as partners of manufacturing industry, promoting 'skill in drawing and


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  • painting and a sound knowledge of ornamental art'. On the other hand, the actual training in materials and processes and the production of executed designs, which Wilson still regarded as absolutely necessary, should be left to the manufacturer.9


    Wilsons position had been contested by critics on his own staff but most notably by the civil servant Henry Cole (1808-82) who took over the schools of design in 1852 on the foundation of the Department of Practical Art (renamed the Department of Science and Art {DSA} in the following year). The painter Richard

    Redgrave (1804-88), who had worked under Wilson and who was appointed as the

    Department's Art Superintendent, in

    expressing the DSA's approach to technical

    training, while being primarily concerned with

    ornament, made it clear that it was essential for the ornamentist first to consider the materials for which he was designing. In considering the

    production of a design he also made a distinction between the designer and the art

    workman, pointing out that it was the workman who should have a thorough working knowledge of the crafts in which he was engaged and good artistic skills in order to

    carry out a designers intentions. The designer, on the other hand, should have a high level of artistic skill and the ability to invent new

    designs, but the amount of knowledge he

    would require of materials and processes would

    vary with the process for which he was

    designing.10 Accordingly, on assuming office, Cole's attempt to revive technical training would be expected to have catered for both

    approaches. His technical classes, run by specialist teachers under the superintendence of the German architect, Gottfried Semper (1803-79), and occupying a whole floor of the

    Department's new London headquarters at

    Marlborough House, however, while catering for the designer, did not provide full workshop training for the art workman. Those for wood

    engraving and casting and moulding in plaster did teach craft skills, and that for painting on

    porcelain involved instruction 'in the actual

    practice' and fired their results in a kiln, but without making the objects themselves. Others such as that for woven fabrics, embroidery, lace, and wall papers, seem to have been largely concerned with acquainting students, as

    potential designers, with processes on a theoretical level; and the prospectus for the class in 'principles and practice of ornamental art

    applied to metals, jewellery, and enamels', while claiming to qualify students as designers and 'skilled workmen', went no further than

    promising that they would 'have the advantage of attending demonstrations of actual processes, such as repouss, chasing, casting, forming, &c' without saying anything about the production of executed designs.11 Despite Cole's efforts, the classes in their first year were not particularly well attended, and the responses of manufacturers to a survey on the usefulness of such classes was disappointing. These may be


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  • FIG. 2 (above) Freehand drawing in outline , Stage 2b of the Department of Science and Art's National Course of Instruction. This stage which involved copying ornament from 'the flat' was a compulsory part of the drawing syllabus in all schools of art up to the 1890s.

    two of the reasons why Cole quietly abandoned them around 1857, thereafter making the

    training of art masters for the provincial schools the main focus of his headquarters.12 Cole, however, managed to hang on to the claim that he was supporting technical training by urging the new masters, on their appointment to

    positions in the provinces, to acquaint themselves with the needs of local industries, ^

    and by providing regulations to allow for technical classes to be set up in the local schools:14 but as the DSA had not provided any funding for them, the evident result was that none seem to have been established.

    From the inauguration of the Department of Science and Art there was also a gradual, if

    unintentional, move away from the design orientation of the schools. Quite apart from the difficulties of providing technical training, the

    policy of admitting mainly working class students had come to be seen to be flawed. It was argued that middle class employers and consumers should also be educated to finance the manufacture of, and to purchase, the good designs that the artisan students were being trained to produce. Thus, while the

    Department continued the policy of holding classes for designers and art workers in the

    evenings and early mornings, it encouraged the middle classes to use the schools during the day. Abandoning the policy of restricting schools to industrial centres the DSA, embracing the view that local schools should be self-supporting, allowed them to be set up in any locality where a committee of leading citizens was able to

    supply suitable premises, and was willing to

    provide financial support. Funding came from student fees, local subscriptions, and

    government grants based on the results of each schools students in an annual 'National

    Competition' and in centrally set examinations. To increase their income the schools charged higher fees to middle class students. By this means the Department had justified its role as

    provider of national art education by raising the number of schools from sixteen in 1852 to 177

    by 1883. Thus if a school was to be viable, and most had a hand-to-mouth existence, it would either have to have a large middle class clientele or would need to attract a good proportion of

    grant each year.15 In order to receive grant from the

    Department a school of art had to employ at least one art master who had acquired certificates at the National Art Training School at South Kensington which qualified him to teach the 'National Course of Instruction'. In

    many cases, however, art masters had no claims to being artists or designers, but, having been educated on the kind of work which would

    gain Department grants, were more likely to concentrate their efforts on good examination results rather than encouraging the

    improvement of design. The course ostensibly had two basic aims,

    firstly to teach drawing and secondly to provide a training in design,16 and it was compulsory to follow its early stages which covered the former. These included the copying of ornament in outline from engravings (Fig. 2) and from plaster casts (Fig. 3) and as most students were taking this part of the course it


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  • FIG. 3 {centre) Shading of ornament from the cast, Stage 5b of the Department of Science and Arts National Course of Instruction. This was a compulsory part of the drawing course intended to teach the rendering of three-dimensional objects in light and shade.

    FIG. 4 (left) Drawing of foliage in outline from nature , Stage 10a of the Department of Science and Art's National Course of Instruction. A non-compulsory part of the course intended to aid the student as a designer.

    also earned more government grant than the more advanced stages. After this, however, other stages of the course, all of which were meant to' equip the designer, were optional. Drawing and painting from nature was included because plant form was considered to be the basis of most ornament (Fig. 4), and flower painting was beneficial as a training in the use of colour. Drawing, painting, and

    modelling the figure from plaster casts and, in a very few schools, from the life model, was also included because the figure was often, though not always, an element in ornament

    (Fig. 5). It was not until the final stages of the

    course, however, that design itself was studied, when the student was required to make designs for specific materials and manufactures. Middle class students tended to take the more fine art oriented aspects of the course such as plant and

    figure drawing, whilst working class students were much more likely to take the design elements. Because so much emphasis was

    placed on drawing, however, it was often several years before a student was allowed to

    design, and it was only a few working class students who had the perseverance, let alone the energy, to progress this far. As most students at any one time were taking the

    elementary drawing aspects of the course and since middle class students with their fine art interests could afford to stay for several years in a school, the observation made by Edward R. Taylor, the head of the Birmingham school, in 1890, that it was only in a few schools that

    design was a principal subject, was probably reasonably accurate.18 Taylor was also probably

    correct in his observation that the courses focus on accurate laboured copying, often lasting over several years, had withered any inventive ability that students had originally possessed when

    they finally began to study design.19 Despite this failure to provide technical

    training, or even focus sufficiently on design across the schools as a whole, some masters were able to fulfil the DSA's objectives in their localities. John Sparkes (1833-1907), the highly successful head of the Lambeth School of Art, pointed out in 1884, that schools that had

    provided technical education had done so 'on their own responsibility, and solely by means of their own pecuniary resources/20 This did not

    mean, however, that they had provided on-site

    workshop training. Their success, where it

    occurred, mainly lay in the area of collaboration with local manufacturers in improving the

    quality of design and execution through better

    drawing skills and an improved ability to design ornament, which, in turn, influenced production in the workplace. Sparkes gave examples from across the country where this had happened: at

    Stoke, where the leading ceramics manufacturer Herbert Minton made the attendance of

    apprentices compulsory and paid their fees, producing large numbers of designers, painters and directors, for pottery firms, which in many cases allowed them to dispense with the need to

    employ foreign artists; at Sheffield where the head master, with the help of the artist/designer, Alfred Stevens (1817-1875), had revolutionized

    design in the metalwork industries; in

    Nottingham, where the success of the lace

    industry was largely the result of the


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  • FIG. 5 Chalt{ drawing of a figure from the cast , William Orpen, National Competition Silver Medal, Dublin School of Art, 1896-7.

    establishment of a design class specifically targeting design for lace, basing new designs on modified hand-made lace examples adapted for machine manufacture; and at Lambeth where

    Sparkes himself had encouraged Henry Doulton

    (1820-1897) to experiment with 'art pottery', employing designers educated in the school who

    developed their designs in the material in Doulton s workshops.21

    After the abandonment of his Special Technical Classes, Cole, himself, did not

    altogether dispense with technical training. In 1858 he set up decorative art workshops with the

    purpose of ornamenting the buildings of his new Museum at South Kensington. They pursued an educational programme similar in its objectives to one previously attempted under Wilson, which had involved training a small number of students on the job in large-scale decorative art

    projects and owed something to the practice developed in Rome and subsequently employed in Germany, particularly in Munich, by the Nazarenes and their followers. The Nazarenes had revived fresco painting, stained glass, mosaic and other decorative arts for large scale projects, and this had appealed to Wilson in particular who, looking back to the Renaissance studio

    system, believed that the training of students under a master, was a way to revive, not only history painting on a large scale, but also the decorative arts. Wilson s students had worked on the ornamentation of the grand staircase at

    Buckingham Palace, under Prince Alberts art

    advisor, Lewis Gruner, and had received a commission from Sir Robert Peel, to decorate his house under Alfred Stevens, who was a member of Wilson's staff.22 Cole also employed artists who owed their skills to Stevens' tutelage, in his similar schemes at the South Kensington Museum: Godfrey Sykes, James Gamble, Reuben Townroe and Francis Wollaston Moody had trained small groups of students in carrying out decorative work (Fig. 6).2^ The South


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  • FIG. 6 Design for a sgrafitto ornament for the South Kensington Science Schools (now the Henry Cole Building), Francis Wollaston Moody, executed by students at the National Art Training School, Magazine of Art (1893), 408.

    Kensington workshops were continued until

    1877, four years after Cole's retirement, by which time, the Department had lost control of the Museum building programme to the Office of Works.24

    The philosophy of the Arts and Crafts Movement as far as it applied to art education can be summed up in William Morris's statement that: 'the artist and the designer should practically be one' 25 This highlights the movement's objective of making the workman into an artist and the artist into a workman, who, in design terms, understands, practically, the materials and processes for which he

    designs. As has already been seen, Redgrave was adopting a not dissimilar position in the 1850s but the Department had never been able, because of the opposition of manufacturers to do any more than expect that the necessary technical training would be provided in the commercial workshop. Dyce and Cole had both seen that one of the major obstacles preventing the schools from really improving British

    design was that design and the crafts had little

    prestige as professions, when students were far more inclined to attend the schools to become fine artists.26 The problem could not be rectified until design acquired equal prestige in the

    public consciousness. From the 1860s, however, perceptions amongst the educated classes would

    begin to change. The writings of John Ruskin and the example of William Morris were

    important factors in bringing this about. Ruskin's writings had a bearing on the

    middle classes' participation in craftwork in schools of art, in that he had argued forcibly for

    decorative art to be considered as seriously as fine art. He had also insisted that artistic manual labour was a necessary activity for the

    fully developed human being, whether a member of the upper, the middle, or of the

    working, classes.27 William Morris and his firm most clearly exemplified what Ruskin was

    arguing for: Morris, a wealthy gentleman and

    major poet as well as a designer had made

    design respectable especially since he had harnessed the skills of leading painters, such as

    Rossetti, Maddox Brown and Burne-Jones as members of a commercial firm producing decorative art, which was admired on the continent as well as being fashionable in Britain. From the 1870s artists, sympathetic to Ruskin's ideas and friends of Morris, were

    beginning to be involved with the DSA. When Richard Redgrave retired in 1875 he

    was succeeded by Edward Poynter (1836-1919), as Director of the DSA's Art Division and

    Principal of the National Art Training School from 1875 to 1881. A painter who had been trained in Paris, Poynter, in his lectures on

    design, given and published before Morris began his own career as a speaker, saw all kinds of art as different species of workmanship, and that the function of the artist was to be a good workman. He urged the need for a revival of

    craftsmanship, and looked at design far more in terms of an appropriate use of materials, the fitness of the artefact for the purpose for which it was designed, and the aesthetic quality of its

    workmanship. This contrasted with the attitude of the previous generation which had regarded it as more important to concentrate on design as


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  • the application of ornament.28 Whilst this did not lead him to attempt the introduction of

    workshop training Poynter did begin to reform the designers basic activity, that of drawing, by championing a move towards more rapid execution based on observation and analysis, which the older approach had tended to

    disregard in preference for a concentration on elaborate finish. Partly as an aid to this he also

    encouraged far more life drawing in the local schools through changes to the examination

    system. Poynter and three French migr artists, Aim-Jules Dalou, Edouard Lantri, both

    sculptors and Alphonse Legros, a painter and

    printmaker, taught their students by demonstration. And there is evidence that some of the art masters who emerged from the school in the early 80s were beginning to insist on

    teaching in this way, helping their students to think like designers by making drawings on the blackboard to show, for example, how a piece of ornament was constructed.29 Poynter also co-

    opted William Morris as a design examiner for the annual National Competitions.50 His

    successor, Thomas Armstrong (1832-1911), was also a Paris-trained painter and in the same artistic circle as Poynter, Morris and Walter Crane. Armstrong showed his support for hands-on training in the crafts through summer courses in the Training School in 1886: the first of these was a course in enamelling by L.

    Dalpeyrat followed by one in which Walter Crane gave tuition in gesso, sgraffito, tempera, plaster relief work, designing for embroidery and repouss metalwork.51 These courses, however, were unaccountably, not repeated.


    Whilst officials within the Department, who had embraced an Arts and Crafts ideology, were able to do very little in bringing about the

    adoption of workshop training because of the DSA's position as an instrument of

    government,52 another movement had been,

    gathering pace within the country from the late 1860s onwards, which would eventually bring great changes within the schools of art. The climate of opinion in the country at large, especially amongst manufacturers, had begun to change towards a perception of the need for more technical training for industry in all areas of production, and there was a growing general concern that the Department of Science and Art was not practical enough in the training it

    provided.55 This, probably had little to do with the teaching of Ruskin or the example of William Morris, but, like the call for

    government-sponsored design education in the

    1830s, was a reaction to the belief that Britain's

    performance as a trading nation was being eroded by competition from other countries whose advantages appeared to derive from their provision of more effective training for their industrial workforce. The catalyst for this

    perceptual readjustment was the Paris Universal Exhibition of 1867. Whereas the Great Exhibition of 1851 had confirmed the view that more artistic training was necessary to improve the competitiveness of industries, which nevertheless enjoyed a technological lead, the 1867 exhibition seemed to demonstrate


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  • that the country's position had been reversed.

    Artistically Britain was now seen to be holding her own, but technologically she was losing her

    previously undisputed lead. 34

    The most significant early result of the new climate was the formation of the City and Guilds of London Institute in 1877 - a move with which Colonel John Donnelly, the head of the DSA, was closely involved in an ex officio capacity. The City and Guilds was the first

    organization to provide an effective accessible national system of grant-aid for technical

    subjects, made payable on the examination results of students taking such subjects as

    bricklaying, carpentry and joinery, and wood

    carving.35 The City and Guilds also gave grants to technical colleges in manufacturing areas and erected a Central Institution, which opened in 1884 on Exhibition Road opposite the South

    Kensington Museum. Additionally, it

    supported its own South London Art School in

    Kennington Road. This institution, while

    running the DSA course, catered for some local trades: giving modelling classes under the National Art Training Schools design master,

    Hugh Stannus, to prepare students as architectural sculptors; trained others in the

    pottery industry; and ran a wood engraving class, that had been transferred from the National Art Training School. In addition to this the City and Guilds provided studentships at the School of Art Woodcarving, another of

    Donnelly's projects.36 Outside London, there were several other

    independent responses, particularly in some of the major textile towns, where workshop

    training was introduced. In the West Riding of Yorkshire weaving schools had been set up in

    Huddersfield, Bradford and Keighley, complete with instruction on working looms. The Huddersfield Mechanics' Institution was, if anything, responding to the intentions of the schools of design as it had provided design teaching which included instruction on a treddle and Jacquard loom from as early as

    1857, with other machines added later.

    Teaching at Huddersfield was provided by a weaver and a design master, trained under the

    DSA, who also had weaving skills.3^ A similar institution had been set up in Glasgow in 1877

    where, in the early 1880s design instruction was

    given by a master from the local school of art.38 A government response relating directly

    to the need for technical training in schools of art was not forthcoming until the Royal Commission for Technical Instruction of 1882-4. Its minutes of evidence demonstrate that the concern to provide more practice-based training for designers and art workmen was

    widespread among those with commercial rather than artistic objectives. George Anderson, the M.P. who proposed the setting up of the Commission,39 was a Glasgow politician who had an interest in education and was known as a 'defender of the working man'.40 He had, however, shown no direct interest in art and design education.41 His

    primary concern was his belief that Britain had lost some of its competitive edge because of a

    deskilling of the labour force resulting from a decline in the apprenticeship system, a

    consequence of the sub-division of labour. He


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  • also believed that skills were generally of poor quality because of the low prestige of manual work. As a first step, he called for the proposed Commission to visit and report on the technical schools of several foreign countries to show 'the

    great advantages the industries of these countries are deriving from such schools'.

    Although not addressing the associated

    problem of design, in support of training in handicrafts as a means towards higher quality products and a more skilled export-producing workforce, he cited an example from France which bore on the training which schools of art

    might give:

    . . . there was one school containing about

    1,000 boys who were learning carpentry, carving, gilding, engraving, clock and watch

    making, and the making of mechanical and

    philosophical instruments. In that way the French were able to beat this country in all these articles . . . manual dexterity and handicraft skill were greatly in need of

    encouragement in this country

    where one cause of Britain's poor performance 'was the absence of craftsmanship from our educational training'.42

    The Royal Commission heard evidence from industrial interests which both criticized the DSA for its lack of provision and supported Anderson's call for more practical tuition. For

    example, John Benn and Henry Paul, both cabinet makers, acknowledged that there had been a decline in the apprenticeship system in their trade, and George Shipton, a house

    decorator, went so far as to say that art school instruction was 'useless to operative workmen' while agreeing with the others in proposing the establishment of trade schools under skilled workmen.4^

    William Morris, who was also called as a

    witness, generally agreed with the call for

    workshop training,44 arguing that there should be no distinction between Redgrave's 'designer' and 'art workman', and that the schools should aim to give a thorough training in design alongside a working understanding of process. His purpose was that the art workman would become a designer, or artist, in the fullest sense, and that the designer or artist producing designs should also be an art workman. This

    represented a subtle shift away from Redgrave's position, went beyond the workmen's call for

    workshop training, and would be the position taken by some of the leading schools and teachers during the next two decades. As far as artistic training for design was concerned Morris advocated a thorough training in

    drawing, to be based primarily on a study of historic ornament and plant form - very much

    existing art school practice - believing that a

    designer should understand tradition but that he should also, through a developed understanding of form based on the study of

    nature, be able to go beyond tradition, and thus not fall back on the plagiarism of dead styles. His position should not be viewed as innovative: it was not dissimilar from that advocated by Cole's DSA colleague Owen

    Jones, some twenty-six years earlier.45 In fact, whilst seeming generally satisfied with the


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  • DSA's course; as an examiner Morris criticized the Department for its refusal to reward National Competition designs carried out in the material. This was a criticism which would be voiced increasingly during the following decade, particularly by the Birmingham School, until the Department conceded in 1895, giving tacit if belated approval to workshop training through its examination system.46

    The local schools of art had to wait until 1889 before any supportive legislation was to issue from Parliament. This was embodied in the Technical Instruction Act of that year and its

    amending acts of 1891 and 1892 (the latter

    dealing with Scodand) by which local authorities were enabled to raise a penny rate in support of technical instruction. More significantly, the 1890 Local Taxation ( Customs and Excise) Act made

    money from customs and excise duties available to local authorities to subsidize technical education. Following the 1891 amendment act technical education in England and Wales came under the control of Technical Education Committees drawn from several interested local

    bodies, while the Scottish amending legislation made local authorities solely responsible. At the same time schools of art, in England and Wales, along with technical colleges came increasingly under municipal control. These developments made the schools of art more financially secure, a situation which was further enhanced with the advent of block grants in the new century under the Board of Education and the Scotch Education Department. With greater financial

    security and a loosening of the hold pf the DSA, whose system was still in operation into the early

    twentieth century, greater latitude in planning courses, especially with regard to the introduction of workshop training, became

    possible. In some schools, its direct association with the Arts and Crafts Movement and its

    ideology was apparent, in others workshop training would be more of a commercial

    response to the Technical Instruction Acts. In either case, it was these Acts which initially made widespread workshop training a practical possibility.


    The similar pattern followed by the introduction of workshop training under teachers who were also working practitioners, rather than certificated art masters, in two leading schools, those at Birmingham and Glasgow, both of whom had strong links with the Arts and Crafts

    Movement, highlights some common features which might be seen in other schools. Although these two schools, and the London xCounty Council Central School of Arts and Crafts, which will be discussed below, were very much in the vanguard of developments, they have been chosen for discussion not to claim any uniqueness for them but because more is known about them than many other similar institutions. As more research is done on the provision in different localities it will become increasingly easy to discern patterns, both in terms of the

    development of workshop training, and the educational philosophies employed.


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  • FIG. 7 Repouss Fire Guard , Florence Stern, Birmingham School of Art, The Studio , vol 2 (1894), 173.

    Both schools started their attempts to introduce workshop training by appealing, as the DSA had always done, to the need to

    encourage design in local industries. In

    Birminghams case there was already a strong Arts and Crafts ambience among its wealthy citizens who supported the school of art. The

    city had a good craft tradition, through its

    metalworking trades, stained glass workshops, and an important local architectural and decorative art culture fostered by its wealthy middle class, several of whom espoused the Civic Gospel which saw the municipality as a

    promoter of culture. Some members of this lite were also collectors of Pre-Raphaelite paintings, disciples of Ruskin and admirers of William Morris. Through them the local school of art was probably the first in the country to be

    municipalized.47 There was thus a firm support base for the development of craft training in the school and for the employment of a staff with Arts and Crafts leanings. The paramount local

    industry, that of metalworking, was the first to receive attention. It may be that the metal trades especially where they were carried on in small workshops were easily adapted to the conditions of the art school classroom: for both

    Birmingham and Sheffield were producing executed designs from the early 1880s. In

    Birmingham's case the first of these, however, were designed in the school but executed in the commercial workshop as there were no facilities in the former at this time.48

    Training in craftwork at Birmingham began on a very small scale after the

    appointment of Thomas Spall, as modelling

    master in 1885 (modelling being part of the National Course of Instruction). Spall was an

    expert in repouss, which he began to teach a

    year later and for which prizes were awarded

    locally, from the 1887-8 session (Fig. 7).49 The most significant move came in 1889 when the School established close links with the

    Birmingham Jewellers and Silversmiths' Association (BJSA) and they set up a class at the Ellen Street Branch School for which the school

    provided design training and the BJSA technical instruction. In the following year the class was transferred to larger premises at Vittoria Street in the Jewellery Quarter with

    funding from the municipality and the BJSA. Here, a wide range of processes: 'engraving, enamelling, chasing, embossing in high relief, die-sinking, applied wire ornamentation, carving, lapidary work, damascening' were


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  • introduced. Metalworking was also introduced into the teaching of the Central School when its extensions, which included workshops, known in Birmingham as 'art laboratories', were completed in 1893. Provision went further than this staple manufacture, however, with the introduction between 1893 and 1900 of classes in many other crafts which included: wood

    carving, wood-engraving, needlework, and

    terracotta, leatherwork, stained glass, ceramic

    murals, gesso, poster design and lithography, stencilling, cabinet making and book binding.50 The philosophy of the staff at Birmingham was also beginning to move away from the South

    Kensington approach: Edward R. Taylor (1838-1912), the head master, not only integrated the making of designs into the early stages of the curriculum but also came to see that there were advantages in training students to produce designs directly in the material rather than reproducing them from drawings on paper.51 Professional practitioners with close Arts and Crafts connections: like Benjamin Creswick (1853-4946), a member of the

    Century Guild, who taught modelling; and Robert Catterson Smith (1853-1938) who had worked for Morris at the Kelmscott Press, and became head master on Taylor's retirement; were introduced onto the staff. It is unlikely that this kind of teacher would have possessed South Kensingtons Art Teacher's Certificates, enabling the school to earn grant on work

    produced by their students.52

    Glasgow, like Birmingham, was a major commercial and industrial city, With many trades. It was a leading manufacturer of

    textiles: printed cottons, sewn muslins, and

    carpets. Printing, ornamental cast iron

    founding, pottery and glassmaking, were also

    practiced, and there was a thriving architectural

    profession catering for rich middle class and business clients, with an associated market for the domestic decorative arts which were also

    required for its shipbuilding industry. Unlike

    Birmingham, however, there was no strong municipal interest in the school of art. In the

    early 1880s its management committee had allowed itself to be practically cut out from

    policy making by the head master, Thomas Charles Simmonds (1842-1912), who ran the

    school, almost as a private business, appointing and paying the staff himself. Simmonds had

    opened a 'special technical class' in 1882, for the

    purpose of teaching design, china, glass and

    tapestry painting, and general decorative work, which he claimed was to meet the demand created by the 'growing taste for artistic homes'.5^ He also, from around 1882, opened and ran a branch school of art at Dumbarton

    where, in collaboration with its main

    benefactors, the shipbuilders WillianvDenny and Sons, he set up a class for 'craft studies ... with the object of it producing high class decorations for the saloons of steamers such as

    figure panels, painted tiles, stained glass and wood carvings'.54 How much any of this involved in-house workshop training, however, is unclear and his classes, being very much

    dependent on his own initiative, were allowed to lapse after he left the city in 1885. Between then and 1890 there were no significant moves, under the new head master Francis Henry


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  • Newbery (1855-1946), to establish any kind of

    workshop training in the school.

    Newbery was primarily a painter, who had been trained under Poynter at the National Art Training School. He had wished to introduce technical classes to Glasgow School of Art from his appointment in 1885 but was

    prevented from doing so by lack of financial resources. Like Taylor at Birmingham,

    FIG. 8 Repouss panel in copper , Kellock Brown, designed by Arthur Heygate McMurdo in 1 886 for the Century Guild, The Studio , vol 16 (1899), 189.

    however, he encouraged the production of executed designs completed outside the school.

    Being interested in developing educational links with manufacturing interests Newbery supplied a teacher to the Glasgow Weaving College, from 1885, and developed the existing branch school in the East End of Glasgow as a

    training ground for the designers of

    Templeton's carpet works from 1887. At the

    Weaving College he personally offered a silver medal for designs woven in the fabric; as a result of which completed designs were entered in the National Competition at South

    Kensington in 1886. In 1887 the experiment was repeated in the central school where a

    governor's prize was offered for textile design carried out in the material, one of the

    premiated designs subsequently winning a gold medal in the National Competition.55 That the

    experiment was not continued illustrates the difficult position that schools of art were in, in the 1880s, when they had no workshops of their own. The person who won the gold medal, who was incidentally the first woman to win such a high award from Glasgow, was herself the designer for her father's textile firm and was in the privileged position of being able to draw on its facilities. It was a coincidence that as with Birmingham, the first craft to be taught under Newbery was repouss in 1890, under the modelling master, Kellock Brown, a member of the Century Guild (Fig. 8).56 Other craft classes were only opened in 1893, when

    funding became available from the customs and excise residue grant/These included stained

    glass, bookbinding, wood and stone carving,


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  • FIG. 9 Glasgow School of Art, Technical Studio , c. 1913. Glasgow School of Art Archives

    etching and needlework. That these free classes could not have existed without this extra

    funding is demonstrated by their costing 69.19.0 in salaries for the tutors, while they earned 5.10.0 in fees charged to non- students.57 By 1900, with new premises, there were also classes in book decoration, pottery painting, etching, textile design and weaving, lithographic and poster design, enamels, mosaic, interior decoration, sgraffito and gesso (Fig. 9). As in Birminghams case many of these classes could be justified as a means of aiding existing trades, but others were introductions of crafts which were not practiced in Glasgow: repouss and enamelling in particular. Moreover, although the DSA course was retained until 1900, along with the certificated art teachers, the technical classes were almost without exception taught by working practitioners.

    As with Birmingham there was a new

    emphasis on painting both as a craft and as a decorative art, the latter reflecting Ruskin's views on paintings proper function, but also

    reprising the earlier attempts by Wilson and Cole to revive large-scale public projects.

    Glasgow ran a course on the technics of

    painting', which included lectures on colour

    chemistry and both schools taught fresco and

    tempera painting and produced murals in

    public buildings (Fig. 10).58 Glasgow also

    developed a collaborative approach in which students with different crafts skills combined their talents in the production of decorative schemes for complete rooms on the school's

    premises, following proposals made by Walter Crane for the reform of the Royal College of Art in 1898, a practice which was introduced into other schools such as the Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts.59

    A feature of the craft workshopsvin both schools was that they were most intensively used by middle class women, the same

    category of student that Cole had introduced into the schools of art in the 1850s, who had

    traditionally tended to take fine art, rather than design subjects. The annexation of these new activities by this group is striking, and

    probably occurred in many other schools. In

    Birmingham, from 1884 there was an increase in women producing and gaining awards for

    designs, particularly from 1894, after the


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  • FIG. 10 Laying the Foundation Stone of the Guildhall (Fourteenth *

    Century) , Sidney Meteyard, Birmingham School of Art, cartoon for a Mural for Birmingham Town Hall, The Studio , vol 1 (1893), 238.

    opening of the art laboratories.60 While at

    Glasgow, the numbers of women students

    designating their occupation as 'designer' in the school's registers rose from a mere seven out of a roll of 180 women in 1892 to fifty-one out of a roll of 212 in 1894, a year after the

    opening of the technical studios.61 That much of this design activity was based on the crafts is demonstrated in Birmingham's case where the

    production of executed designs by women won 74 per cent of the 157 listed local awards in this category between 1890 and 1900. 62

    Although there are no similar figures available for Glasgow the predominance of middle class women in the crafts is indicated by the records of executed designs entered for the National

    Competition between 1897 and 1899, where all but five of the forty items were produced by women students.63 The crafts most popular among Birmingham's women students were metalwork and enamelling (54%); needlework and embroidery (28%); gesso (7%); book illustration and prints (5%): at Glasgow there are no comparable figures available, but if the low sample already referred to for submissions to the National Competition is a guide: of the

    thirty items identified by media, sixteen were for repouss metalwork or enamels, seven for

    painted ceramics and six for needlework, and one for mosaic. 6^ The predominance of metalwork might be expected in Birmingham, but in Glasgow, where no tradition, existed it is more remarkable. It could be accounted for

    by the fact that it lent itself particularly well to small-scale workshop production where work could be produced by one person or a

    group of friends in collaboration, allowing its

    practitioners an independent livelihood. In both schools very few activities were not undertaken by women. At Glasgow only the artisan activity of cabinetmaking, which was not taught there as a craft, was not pursued. There was a difference between the two

    schools, however, in the numbers of women who joined their respective staffs. In 1899 only nine per cent of its central school's staff were women. In Glasgow, however, the figure was 26.3%. Out of total of ten female staff, six were

    working in the technical studios: two in

    needlework; one in book decoration; one in ceramic decoration; one in etching, one

    teaching enamelling and block cutting; and one teaching sgraffito and gesso. Of these

    Glasgow staff members, all but one were ex-

    students,65 the larger numbers of female staff in Glasgow reflecting Newbery s philosophy that there was no difference between men and women's potential as artists.66 Women's dominant role in the crafts in Glasgow was

    brought out by an article in The Scots Pictorial of 1898 commenting on an art school

    exhibition, which noted the comparative absence of 'the sterner sex'. The importance of the Glasgow School of Art in promoting women's work is apparent in the journal's comment that its exhibitions were the only opportunities they had of showing their work at that time.6'7 Middle class female students often went on to establish their own craft studios in the city and later found retail outlets

    through such organizations as the Scottish Guild of Handicraft and the Scottish Society


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  • of Art Workers, both initiated in Glasgow in

    1898, and the longer-established exhibitions of the Glasgow Society of Lady Artists' Club.68

    Thus, The Studio could observe in 1913, perhaps with a measure of hyperbole, that there were 'a hundred studios and craft-shops in Glasgow' and remark, with no exaggeration that the movement which gave rise to them was 'largely controlled by women'.69

    Newbery, in the same year, estimated more

    modestly that some thirty men and women were finding a living in Glasgow in the crafts, who ten years earlier could find no foothold, and that their work was on display in the city's shops, adding that these workers had all

    originated in his school.70 Both the Birmingham and Glasgow schools

    acted as centres for the promotion of their students' work. Birmingham's female students had made a strong showing in the London Arts and Crafts Exhibition in 189371 and Glasgow staff and students made a modest appearance from 1889 onwards with an important collection of ground-breaking pieces in 1896, which were

    singled out by The Studio for special comment.72

    Subsequently, both schools' workshops made

    significant contributions to national and international shows.73

    The preponderance of middle class women in the crafts in these two major schools, belied the intentions of the technical instruction movement to concentrate on industrial workers.. Birmingham was criticized for the

    large numbers of 'amateurs' in its classes, by William Richard Lethaby (1857-1937), who

    suggested that trade classes, each focusing on a

    specific industry, as opposed to classes in different crafts and media, should be set up. This advice was not taken,74 nor was there any attempt to open trade classes in Glasgow, where the trades: house painting and decorating; ornamental metalwork; lithography; cabinet

    making; and tile and pottery painting were

    already being catered for in the 'Department of Industrial Art' of the Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical College, with which the School of Art had strong links. These had all been established after consultation with various trades organizations.75


    The position of Taylor and Newbery was somewhat different from that of Lethaby, whose London County Council Central School of Arts and Crafts opened in 1896 as an institution completely independent of the DS A, and thus not 'a school of art' in the sense in which the term has been employed in this essay. It specialized exclusively in the needs of specific trades and their workshop practices. These

    comprised: book production; silversmithing and metalworking; building design and

    decoration; cabinet work; textiles; and architectural modelling. Lethaby 's focus on

    tradesmen, was in one sense a return to the

    policy of the schools of design, but unlike them did this through a training in the direct

    handling of materials and tools, setting out to make his institution 'an associated group of


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  • FIG. IIA (above) Programme for a Glasgow School of Art Club At Home, Margaret Macdonald, 1894. Glasgow School of Art Archives

    FIG. 11C (right) Maquette for relief sculpture above main entrance of Glasgow School of Art , Charles Rennie Mackintosh, 1899, Dekorative Kunst, March 1902, 216.

    representative schools for particular industries'.76 Conceiving of the designer as: 'the

    explorer, the experimenter, the inventor one whose 'special faculty is to wonder how

    things would be "like this" or "like that"; who 'is not content to take them as they are . ..'77; rather than one who merely designed and

    applied ornament, he saw craft workshops as locations for the development of new solutions to the problems of making; as seedbeds for new industrial applications.78 Because his emphasis was on learning through an enquiry of the limitations of particular crafts and their associated materials, his educational practice placed far less emphasis on drawing than either

    Glasgow or Birmingham. As he wrote:


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  • FIG. IIB Repouss panel in brass , for bookcase designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, c. 1897. Glasgow School of Art Collection

    Drawing is a useful aid in recording ideas, but much the best work has been done

    directly without it, the design and

    workmanship being inseparable . . . The closer design and workmanship can be associated the better in every case: for only by being an expert in the work required can one properly arrange how it shall be done79

    It is unlikely that either Newbery or Taylor would have disagreed with Lethaby s position when he was discussing craftwork. Furthermore, all three had similar views on the importance of

    drawing as a means of personal expression, reacting against the earlier DSA tendency to

    promote it as a means of merely making accurate

    copies for examination purposes.80 There was a difference in the approach to and understanding of design between Lethaby and Newbery, however, the latter leaning more towards the traditional South Kensington view of the

    generation of designs on paper prior to their

    application to the material. He maintained that:

    'inability to draw or model well hinders students in the expression of their ideas, and no good design is possible unless the designer is first a

    good draughtsman'.81 Newbery s major concern, was not with discovering solutions to design problems but with the development of the artistic

    individuality of his students; in helping the student to discover him/herself as an artist. As a

    painter, who like his teacher Poynter, regarded drawing and painting primarily as crafts, he saw the production of drawings and designs on paper as an indication of the development of what he called the 'artistic personality' of the student.

    However, if drawing was an index of artistic

    personality, Newbery also expected that the artist would go on to find the medium which best suited his or her character. Thus a student might become an artist/painter, an artist/embroiderer, an artist/ architect, or even an artist/teacher, with the rider that Newbery believed, like Lethaby, that, to teach art, a person should first be able to make art. The prioritization of drawing and

    designing on paper, was also perhaps appropriate to Glasgow's students, large numbers of whom were textile designers, lithographers and architects. Moreover, Newbery 's two- dimensional approach lent itself to the

    production of a the distinctive Glasgow Style which could be expressed in its entirety via a

    drawing and still retain all its essential qualities when carried out in wood, metal, as a stencilled wall decoration, or an embroidered table runner

    (Fig. 1 la, b and c). It could also go too far in the direction of stylistic expression, ignoring the need to respect the materials of which the object was

    made, as in some of the chairs designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh in the early 1900s. Given this background and emphasis, it would

    probably be true to say that the Glasgow Style


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  • FIG. 12 Design for an Axminster Carpet , Lizzie Naismith, Glasgow School of Art, National Competition Silver Medal, 1896-7.

    did not grow primarily out of an Arts and Crafts ethos in which the nature and limitation of materials took priority: what it did have in common with the Arts and Crafts Movement was its concern for individual expression. Reflecting the same drawing-based philosophical approach, Newbery s technical studios always had two members of staff, a designer and a

    craftsman, the first taking priority over the

    second,82 an arrangement which reflects

    Redgraves distinction between the designer and art workman. Unlike the latter case, however, both teachers in Glasgow were professional practitioners, each equally capable of producing executed designs, and they taught by demonstration.8^

    The Birmingham school's strong links with the Arts and Crafts Movement and the

    patronage of a Ruskinite middle class enabled it to develop as a centre of the movement in its

    home city, but as the ideology and working methods which it espoused were not adapted to mass-market taste, followed by the majority of the city's metalworking workshops, its effects were limited.84 The impact of Glasgows technical studios on tradesmen in general was

    probably no greater than Birmingham's as evidenced by the fact that working class students in the Technical College's Decorative Trades classes could not be induced to continue their education at the art school.85 Nevertheless, the crafts taught in both schools either helped in

    enriching existing decorative art practices in their respective cities, such as stained glass and architectural sculpture, or enabled the setting up of commercial studio workshops. However in Glasgow's case, its technical studios and the distinctive Glasgow Style formed only part of student production: with Newbery 's emphasis on individuality, and the introduction of new


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  • FIG. 13 Tooled leather binding, William Terry, Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts, National Competition, '90', The Studio , vol. 23 (1901), 267.

    staff, there was a range of different form

    languages being constantly developed.86 Alongside this, the school was still training students as designers for the large-scale textile

    industries, who were producing more traditional designs, adapted to mass-market conditions (Fig. 12).


    Some schools of art adopted Lethaby's trade- focused approach while others were more like

    Birmingham and Glasgow. The Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts, a new school set up under Lethaby s influence by the London County Council in 1896, developed close associations with the printing trades (Fig. 13); while another London County Council School, that at Camden,

    gave trade classes in piano manufacture. The Leicester school established a number of advisory sub-committees, representing masters' and mens associations in the printing trades, house-

    painting, the building trades and cabinet-making with, in some cases, the workshop equipment being provided by trade associations. Other localities with one dominant industry had also set up close links with trade organizations. Sheffield, for example, developed a four-year diploma course in consultation with the Master Silversmiths' Association, and had induced

    employers to pay the fees of a large numbers of its students. The Schools at Macclesfield and Kidderminster were practically monotechnics

    catering respectively for the local silk (Fig. 14)and

    carpet industries. The Manchester School, on the other hand, was more similar to Glasgow. Although textile designers attended the school, trade classes, which included every aspect of

    production from spinning through to designing, dyeing and printing, were run by the Municipal School of Technology.87 Moreover, Manchester's

    history demonstrates that the introduction of crafts classes did not always depend on a close association with leading members of the Arts and Crafts Movement or a sympathy for its aims

    amongst the school's management committee. Morris and Ruskin were not unfamiliar figures at the school and Walter Crane had been its Director of Design from 1893 to 1896, and

    although the institution had been municipalized as early as 1890, was supported by local taxation, and several of its staff were members of the Northern Art Workers' Guild, it did not open crafts classes until 1903. 88


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  • The National Art Training School, which had been the flagship of the DSA's system, was even slower to develop as an Arts and Crafts school. After changing its name to that of the

    Royal College of Art in 1896, it had the benefit of Walter Crane as Director, from 1898 to 1899 and then Lethaby as Professor of Design from 1900 and numbers of leading craft teachers from the Art Workers' Guild on its staff 89 It was not until 1905, however, that it had facilities for

    teaching stained glass, embroidery and tapestry weaving, wood carving and gesso, calligraphy and illuminating and pottery (painting). Yet other important crafts: enamelling, stone and marble carving, furniture construction and

    mosaic work, still had no resources, and a

    government report of 191 1 was able to state that 'much of the inventive design remains

    unpractical'.90 Despite this the Board of

    Education, the DSA's replacement, was

    unwilling to 'contemplate any great extension of craft classes' and it was not until after 1946 that the RCA was divided into separate sections each with fully equipped workshops.91

    Birmingham, Glasgow and the Central School were among the most important schools that adopted workshop training at the hands of

    practitioners in the late nineteenth century. As the Studio survey of 1916 indicated, however, such institutions were widespread by the time of the Great War. How far does this survey demonstrate that the Arts and Crafts Movement had made a difference to schools of art in general? Interestingly, some of these schools were giving very little workshop training: Goldsmith's College was avowedly a fine art school, and only taught book illustration and lettering. The Westminster School of Art was similar, although it offered some design and craft subjects: bookbinding, illustration and wodcarving. The Kidder- minster School, specialising in carpet design, although it had close links with trades

    organizations and ran a thorough design course, because of the nature of the industry for which it catered, does not appear to have

    produced finished designs on the premises (Fig. 15). Such a course could have been run in one of the older schools of art. Most of the schools, however, were offering a large number of craft

    classes, many catering for non-trade students.

    FIG. 14 Design for a sil' hanging, William E. Grimshaw, Macclesfield School of Art, National Competition Bronze Medal, 1896-7.


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  • Alongside the Arts and Crafts Movement there was a parallel Europe-wide decorative art movement in which the schools of art

    participated and in which the Arts and Crafts Movement and the international New Art (art nouveau) movement also played a part. Much of this could be and was expressed through two-dimensional designs (through drawings) which, despite the introduction of technical

    studios, the DSA schools continued to produce in large numbers, as is clear from the annual reviews of the National Competition in such

    journals as the Studio and Magazine of Art. These student designs, were often of a high quality and would not have been out of place in any major exhibition and owed as much, if not more, to the students' awareness of

    contemporary decorative art, through journals and exhibitions, as to their training in the crafts. That said, most of the contemporary decorative art which inspired students was being produced by major figures in the Arts and Crafts

    Movement, but it was arguably its stylistic, as much as to its ideological qualities to which

    they were responding. If the Arts and Crafts Movement was only one inspiration behind this

    burgeoning of decorative art in schools of art, its role in the training of tradesmen is equally difficult to disentangle from that of the

    commercially-driven technical instruction movement. Would workshop training have been introduced into schools of art if there had been no Arts and Crafts Movement? The establishment of weaving schools in the West

    Riding as early as the 1850s, several years before the founding of Morriss firm, suggests that this

    was a distinct possibility. The history of the schools of art, and their perennial recognition of the importance of workshop training also

    suggests it. That technical studios sprang up in these institutions as soon as a source of finance,

    independent of the DSA's system, became available also supports this view. Finally, the existence of a technical studio did not

    necessarily mean that its teacher or its students had bought-into an Arts and Crafts ideology. G. Percival Gaskell, head of the Regent Street

    Polytechnic School of Art, and a member of the Art Worker's Guild, complained that some institutions had produced disappointing results because they had concentrated on craft to the exclusion of art,^ a suggestion that workshop training, without a complementary artistic

    training, both insisted on as equally important by Morris, was insufficient to improve the condition of design in British schools of art.

    FIG. 15 Design for a Wilton carpet border , Thomas R. Bradley, c. 1916, Holme (1916), 145.


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    George Rawson is the Fine Art Librarian at Glasgow School of Art. His research interests include British 19th century art and design education, the Arts and Crafts Movement, nineteenth century British art and the Glasgow Style. His PhD on Fra H. Newbery looked at the educational back-

    ground to the Glasgow Style. His publications include:

    Glasgow's Great Glass Experiment: the Munich ' Glass of

    Glasgow Cathedral (2003); Missionary of Art: Charles Heath Wilson 1809-1882 (2000); Fra H Newbery: artist and art educationist 1855-1946 (1996); various international conference

    papers on design history and art education and contributions to journals and other publications. He has also curated exhibitions on Fra H Newbery and Charles Heath Wilson.


    1 . Holme, Charles (ed.) (1916) Arts & Crafts: a Review of the Wor' executed by Students in the Leading Art Schools of Great Britain and Ireland. London, The Studio.

    2. House of Commons Select Committee on Arts and their connection with Manufactures, Report (1836) London, v.

    3. Dyce, William (1840) Report . . . consequent to his journey on an enquiry into the state of Schools of Design in Prussia, Bavaria and France. London, 38. The report, written in 1838 just before Dyce took up. his post, recommended technical training for design students of silk weaving and calico printing,

    4. Council of the School of Design, Minutes, Vol 1, 46. 5. Ibid., pp. 154 and 157 and Council of the School of Design,

    2nd Report (1842-3) London, 5. 6. Council of the School of Design, 3rd Report (1843-4)

    London, 14 and Minutes, vol. 1, 249, 252-3 and 315. 7. Council of the School of Design, Minutes, vol. 3, 59 and

    Council of the School of Design, Special Committee, Report (1847) London, 114 and 119.

    8. House of Commons. Select Committee on the School of Design, Report , (1849) London, 60. Bell, Quentin (1963) The Schools of Design. London, Routledge & Kegan Paul, 128-34 and Sparkes, John C. L. (1884) Schools of Art: their origin, history, wor' and influence Londbn, William Clowes and Sons for Executive Council of the Society of Arts, 104.

    9. Glasgow School of Art Archives (GSAA): Glasgow Government School of Design, (1853) 8th Report , 9.

    1 0. Redgrave, Richard ( 1 882) Manual of Design: compiled from the writings and addresses of Richard Redgrave , by Gilbert R. Redgrave. London, Chapman and Hall, 33-4 and 169-70. Nikolaus Pevsner, Academies of Art Past and Present , (1940) Cambridge University Press. 259 has unfortunately grossly overstated its case in maintaining that 'not one of the founders and principals of the schools of decorative art down to almost the end of the century had an idea of the organic inter-relation between material, working process, purpose and aesthetic form which William Morris rediscovered'. If Redgrave s generation did not have the practical experience of working in different crafts that Morris possessed, it does not follow that they were not perfectly aware of the importance for the designer of a proper understanding of materials and processes and of the need for workshop training.

    1 1. Department of Practical Art, 1st Report , (1853) London, 20-3 and 380-3.

    12. Macdonald, Stuart (1970) The History and Philosophy of Art Education. London, London University Press, 170-1 evidence from The Engineer , (1857) vol. IV, 423 which claimed that Cole had decided 'to abandon educating pupils in special technicalities'. Macdonald suggested that Cole having found the classes expensive to run, was interested in diverting his resources towards the building up the South Kensington Museum collections, and that he had realized that more finance would be available to the Department through concentrating on teacher training.

    13. House of Commons Select Committee on Schools of Art, Report , (1864) London, 294 'masters are recommended on their arrival in a locality to lose no time in making themselves acquainted with the particular branches of industry followed by the inhabitants

    14. Loc. cit.: 'The Department suggested that "whilst a master is expected to adhere to the course of instruction recommended ... he may advantageously introduce such exceptional or additional stages of study as may be required by the particular industry of the neighbourhood . . . Special classes should be formed for students above 18, who desire to prosecute technical studies'".


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  • 15. The importance of middle class fees and of government grant to schools is seen in their income figures: in 1882 the amount paid in fees (38,594) was double that received by schools in the form of government grant (16,978) and over four times as much as the 7,998 received in local subscriptions: Sparkes (1884), 136 and 138.

    16. Sparkes (1884), 88. 17. House of Commons Select Committee on Schools of Art

    (1864), 267. Only ten out of sixty schools replying to a survey in the early 1860s had life classes.

    1 8. Taylor, Edward R. (1 890) Elementary Art Teaching: an educational and technical guide for teachers and learners. London, Chapman and Hall, 151.

    19. Loc. cit.. 20. Sparkes (1884), 104. 21. Ibid., 98-103. 22. Rawson, George (2000) Missionary of Art: Charles Heath

    Wilson, 1809-1882. Glasgow, Foulis Press of the Glasgow School of Art, 24.

    23. Frayling, Christopher (1987) The Royal College of Art: One Hundred & Fifty Years of Art & Design. London, Barrie & Jenkins, 55.

    24. Macdonald (1970), 172. 25. Royal Commission on Technical Instruction, 2nd Report ,

    vol. 3 (1884), London, 153, para. 1589. 26. Dyce (1840), 34 and Department of Practical Art (1853), 27-8. 27. Ruskin, John

    ' The Two Paths', Complete Worfys, vol. 16 edited by E.T. Cook and Alexander Wedderburn (1905) London, George Allen, 320-2. Ruskin's discussion on manual work as an ennobling activity is contained in pages 294-5 and

    ' The Nature of Gothic , Complete Wor's , vol. 2, 200-2.

    28. Poynter, Edward (1873) Ten Lectures on Art. London, Chapman & Hall, 9 and 281-3.

    29. Frayling (1987), 55. Francis Newbery, a student of Poynter made teaching by demonstration central to his pedagogical approach and urged his staff at Glasgow School of Art to follow it. Taylor (1890), 6 shows that it was also important at Birmingham.

    30. DSA, 22nd Report (1878). Walter Crane also became an examiner under Poynter's successor in 1884: DSA, 31st Report (1884).

    3 1 . Crane, Walter ( 1 907) An Artist's Reminiscences. London, Methuen, 307-8 and Armstrong, Thomas (1912) Thomas Armstrong, C.B.: a memoir, 1832-1911. London, Martin Seeker, 67-8.

    32. By this time the National Art Training School's wood engraving class, a survivor of the earlier experiments had been closed because its trade associations left the Department in a vulnerable position: Royal Commission on Technical Instruction(1884),102, para. 1154.

    33. Sparkes (1884), 104. 34. Hansard (1 April 1881), 528-9. Sparkes (1884), 75-6

    records the improvement in British design between the exhibitions of 1851 and 1862 as noted by foreign commentators.

    35. These were examinations taken over from the Society of Arts, which were made more accessible to artisans as they were now only required to pass one, instead of four, science subjects in the DSA's exams before being eligible. Royal Commission on Technical Instruction (1884), 532-533; and Roderick, G.W. & Stephens, M.G. (1978) Education and Industry in the Nineteenth Century: the English Disease London, Longman, 68.

    36. Dictionary of National Biography , (1885) London, Smith Elder & Co (2nd supplement 1912) vol. 1, 514-5 and The Studio , vol. 1 (1893), 58. Whilst being more concerned with the DSA's Science Division, as Director for Science from 1874, Donnelly was the prime mover, ex-officio , in the setting up of the School of Art Woodcarving in 1879 where practical training was given at the hands of practitioners.

    37. Huddersfield University Archives, Huddersfield Mechanics' Institution, Minutes, Minutes of the General Committee, 3 June 1857 ( I am grateful to Hilary Haigh, Archivist at the University of Huddersfield for this information) and Royal Commission on Technical Instruction (1884), 41, para. 444.

    38. Proposals to set up a Glasgow Technical College, which was intended to cater for all the major industries of the city and region, were made in 1871, but the only outcome before the 1880s was the Glasgow Weaving School, opened in 1877. The Weaving School's teaching was both practical and theoretical. Its purpose-built premises contained, in addition to a lecture theatre, a weaving shed equipped with hand and steam-powered looms where students were given an understanding of weaving in wool, cotton and silk on a variety of machines at the hands of a practitioner. Strathclyde University Archives, Technical College of Glasgow. Weaving Branch, Annual Report, 1889-90 , (1890) Glasgow, 23.


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  • 39. Hansard (1 April 1881), 526-33. 40. Stephen Jeans, J. (1872) Western Worthies : a Gallery of

    Biographical Sketches of West of Scotland Celebrities. Glasgow, Star Office, 47-56.

    41. Anderson was never a member of the management committee of the Glasgow School of Art.

    42. Hansard (1 April 1881), 527. 43. Royal Commission for Technical Instruction (1884), 211-2

    and 441-5. 44. Ibid., 158-9: Although a DSA examiner, Morris admitted

    that he had no close familiarity with schools of art and while agreeing, when prompted, that it would be an advantage to install looms, for example, in schools, he had no particular views on how feasible it would be to do so.

    45. Jones, Owen (1856) The Grammar of Ornament. London, Day & Sons, 156-7 and Rawson, George (2003) 'Challenging the canon: British Nineteenth Century Design Education, Non-European Ornamental Art and the Glasgow Style', in Gyula Ernyey (ed.) Britain and Hungary 2: Contacts in Architecture, Art and Theory during the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries: Essays and Studies. Budapest, Hungarian University of Craft and Design, 88. Morris, despite his leading position in the Arts and Crafts Movement, was not, as has been suggested, a loan voice advocating workshop training in schools of art: Pevsner, Nikolaus (1940) Academies of Art Past and Present. Cambridge University Press, 258-9 and 263-5. A close reading of Morris's evidence to the Royal Commission -

    Royal Commission for Technical Instruction (1884), 150-61 - not only gives the impression of a man who had no close familiarity with the art educational system but of one who was also, to a certain extent, thinking on his feet.

    46. Royal Commission for Technical Instruction (1884), 161, para. 1666 and Swift, John (1992) 'The Arts and Crafts Movement and Birmingham School of Art 1880-1900', in David Thistlewood (ed.) Histories of Art and Design Education : Cole to Coldstream. London: Longman, 26-8.

    47. Crawford, Alan (1984) 'The Birmingham Setting', in Alan Crawford (ed.) By Hammer and Hand: the Arts and Crafts Movement in Birmingham. Birmingham, Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery, 34.

    48. The Sheffield school was giving classes in wood carving around 1878, and had introduced silver chasing in 1882. The students of the latter class, like those at Birmingham, had been successful in competing for the Goldsmiths' Company prizes. Sheffield was planning to introduce a further class, in bronze casting, 'with a view to improve stove-grate work': Royal Commission for Technical Instruction (1884), 554-5.

    49. Swift, John (1989) Birmingham Art School: its Branch Schools and Female Students, 1880-1900, in Barbara Tilson (ed.) Made in Birmingham: Design & Industry 1889-1899. Warwickshire, Studley, Brewin Books, 50.

    50. Ibid., 61. 51. Taylor (1890), 151-64. 52. Crawford (1984), 38. 53. GS A A: Glasgow School of Art, Annual Report (1882), 7. 54. GSAA: Glasgow School of Art, Press cuttings (1864-189 6),

    p.20: unattributed report on the opening of Dumbarton School of Art and Derby Mercury (16 August 1912).

    55. GSAA, Glasgow School of Krt, Annual Report , (1888), 26. 56. GSAA, Glasgow School of Art, Minutes, 3 March 1890. 57. GSAA, Glasgow School of Art, Minutes, 31 May 1894. Out

    of a roll of 538 they only attracted thirty-eight students. 58. The Studio, vol 1 (1893), 237-40 and Rawson, George

    (1996) Francis Henry Newbery and the Glasgow School of Art, University of Glasgow PhD Thesis, 276-7.

    59. GSAA, Robert Anning Bell, 'Report on the Design Section of Glasgow School of Art, 1911-1916', 1-8, in GSA, Minutes, 23 January 1917; Frayling (1987), 66; Holme (1916) p.6.

    60. Swift (1992), 30-1. 61. Rawson (1996), 181. 62. Swift (1992), 30. 63. Rawson (1996), 184 and Appendix, Table 4. 64. Swift (1992), 31 and Rawson, loc. cit. 65. Swift (1992), 33 and Rawson (1996), 185. 66. Rawson (1996), 186. 67. The Scots Pictorial (26 November 1898), 302. 68. Cumming, Elizabeth (1992) Glasgow 1900 : Art and Design.

    Zwolle, Waanders Publishers, 109. 69. The Studio (1912) vol. 56, 138. 70. Dominion of Canada, Royal Commission on Industrial

    Training and Technical Education, Report, III, (1913) Ottowa, 703.


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  • 71. Swift (1992), 26. 72. The Studio (1896) vol. 9, 189-205. 73. Swift (1992), 29. Glasgow also contributed craft work to

    exhibitions: in Lige; 1895, the Vienna Secession, 1898; the Venice Biennale, 1899; the Paris Universal Exhibition, 1900; the Glasgow International Exhibition, 1901; and to exhibitions at Budapest and Turin in 1902, as well as hosting a showing of some of the works from the previous London Arts and Crafts Exhibition in Glasgow in 1895.

    74. Swift (1992) 29. 75. Rawson (1996), 190-1. 76. Rubens, Godfrey (1986) William Richard Lethaby: his life

    and wor', 1857-1931. London: Architectural Press, 188 and 193.

    77. Rubens (1986), 224, quoting Lethaby, G (1921) 'The Teaching of Design', in F. Watson (ed.), The Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Education. Pitman, 453.

    78. Rubens (1986), 228. 79. Ibid., quoting Lethaby (1921), 452. 80. Ibid., 184; Taylor (1890), 9; Rawson (1996), 107. 8 1 . GS A A, GS A, Prospectus ( 1 903-4), 32-3 . 82. Rawson(1996) 287. 83. Lethaby also adopted this approach at the Central School

    of Arts and Crafts but for different reasons: Lethaby wrote: 'The teaching should be conducted in most cases, we think, by practical craftsmen acting under visitors or co-teachers who would treat of design; at the present time very few men can both teach design and practise a craft': Rubens (1986), 187.

    84. Crawford (1984), 33-4. 85. GSAA, GSA Minutes, 17 January 1911: Newbery, 'Staff

    Arrangements', 4-5. 86. GSAA, Robert Anning Bell, 'Twenty Years of the Glasgow

    School of Design, (1931), 1: Bell noted a discernible change in style from 1904 when the French Designer, Adolphe Giraldon, became Professor of Design and Decorative Art, a further change to an Alfred Stevens-influenced style under, W.E.F. Britten from 1908. Later, from 1911, the students came under the influence of Robert Anning Bell and Frederick Cay ley Robinson. Bell noted, however, that the Glasgow Style persisted particularly in the embroidery department.

    87. Holme (1916). 88. Jeremiah, David (1980) A hundred years and more.

    Manchester, Manchester Polytechnic, 28-32. 89. Fray ling (1987), 67: Lethaby appointed Christopher Whall

    for stained glass, Grace Christie, embroidery and tapestry weaving; George Jack, wood carving and gesso; Henry Wilson, silverwork and jewellery; Edward Johnston, writing and illuminating: there were special lectures by WAS Benson on metalwork and Halsey Ricardo on types of building construction.

    90. Rubens (1986), 227. 91. Ibid. (1986), 229. 92. Holme (1916), 16.


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    Article Contentsp. [28]p. 29p. 30p. 31p. 32p. 33p. 34p. 35p. 36p. 37p. 38p. 39p. 40p. 41p. 42p. 43p. 44p. 45p. 46p. 47p. 48p. 49p. 50p. 51p. 52p. 53p. 54p. 55

    Issue Table of ContentsThe Journal of the Decorative Arts Society 1850 - the Present, No. 28, ARTS & CRAFTS ISSUE (2004), pp. 1-208Front MatterReview of the Year 2003 -2004 [pp. 4-4]Introduction [pp. 5-5]Bernard Bumpus (1921-2004) [pp. 6-7]William Morris and Scotland [pp. 8-27]The Arts and Crafts Movement and British Schools of Art [pp. 28-55]Byrdcliffe and the 'Dream of Somewhere' [pp. 56-81]George Jack, Master Woodcarver of the Arts &Crafts Movement: "In all ways excellent and inspiring" [pp. 82-107]John Houghton Maurice Bonnor (1875-1917): A little known designer of the Arts and Crafts Movement [pp. 108-125]Lord Dunsany 1878-1957: Portrait of a collector [pp. 126-147]The Pursuit of Imperfection: The appreciation of Japanese tea-ceremony ceramics and the beginning of the Studio-Pottery movement in Britain [pp. 148-171]The Saving of Standen [pp. 172-183]7 Hammersmith Terrace, London: The Last Arts and Crafts Interior [pp. 184-203]Cumulative Index [pp. 206-208]Back Matter