International Journal of Art & Design Education

Birmingham and its Art School: Changing Views 1800-1921

Volume 7.1   1988



The beginning and development of nationally organised art and design education in 19th century Britain is well recorded and pursued through the documents of various government agencies. This paper argues that a pattern of thought has developed which tends to identify the history of art and design as being centrally dominated in all aspects from London, with occasional but sporadic rebellions from the provinces. In contrast, John Swift elaborates on the local pressures and influence on Birmingham School of Design/Art from its foundation in 1800 to 1921 and in so doing makes use of the extensive archive that the Birmingham Institute of Art and Design (previously the Faculty of Art and Design of Birmingham Polytechnic) retains in the School of Art and Design Education.