Art School in Action

Event Type:



Project Space 2, The Art School, GSA Students' Association, 20 Scott Street.


7 Sep 2015 - 10 Sep 2015
Mon - Thu, 11:00 - 17:00



Art School in Action Exhibition
Poster designed by Jessica Taylor

Art School in Action

Event info

Presented as part of the Material Culture in Action Conference.  

Art School in Action (1970-1986) looks at the approaches to teaching at Glasgow School of Art in the 1970s and 1980s. The exhibition centres on a series of podcasts produced as part of GSA’s research project, New Wave: Materials, Methods and Mediums, Glasgow School of Art 1970-1986 alongside artefacts, ephemera and documentation from the School’s archives. 

From the 1960s onwards art schools across the UK underwent a shift in emphasis in approaches to teaching visual art following the first Coldstream Report in 1960. Radical and alternative teaching practices begin to emerge in art schools such as Hornsey College of Art, Ealing School of Art and Central St Martins. Appearing at a time of fundamental change in the framework of art school education as colleges gradually shift from awarding diplomas towards awarding degrees. These two factors contributed to an increased critical reflection, external engagement and interdisciplinary working within art schools at this time. The 1970s and 1980s marked a crucial turning point in pedagogy at Glasgow School of Art. Art School in Action explores this especially fertile period in GSA’s history and considers its legacy. Particular attention is paid to extra-curricular activities, first-year pedagogy and the introduction of new courses in Fine Art that no longer exist. 

This exhibition is curated by Debi Banerjee and Susannah Waters. It received partial funding from the Design History Society.