International Journal of Art & Design Education

Harry Thubron at Leeds and views on the Value of his Ideas for Art Education Today

Volume 4.2   1985



This paper looks at the work and ideas of Harry Thubron, chiefly at Leeds College of Art from 1955-64, and questions whether his teaching philosophy, and his methods of organizing art education experiences, was of a time or has value and are applicable today. The paper describes some of the major ideas and specific practices of Thubron's teaching and the political context for gradual changes in educational ethos. The author concludes that it is apparent that the work of 'basic course' innovators such as Thubron sheds light on questions facing art education today such as:

    The place of professional art and design vis-à-vis art education.
  1. The differing function of an education in 'attitudes' and in 'technical skills'.
  2. The importance of 'scientific' principles of art and design making compared to the importance of individual development.
  3. The relative importance of charismatic teachers and sound educational principles.