Join us for the next session of our IOTA II Research Seminar Series – Free and open to all. More information, and the full series schedule can be found here.
Rethinking histories of British Design since 1915: Empire, Welfare State and Enterprise
15th June 2023, 4pm – 5:30pm, Grand Parade, M2
I have spent almost 50 years curriculum designing, researching designing, teaching, supervising, researching, consulting, publishing, lecturing, and reflecting on histories of design. Throughout this period considerable energy has been focussed on British design. My early public contributions included a lecture on ‘The Success and Failure of the Dorland Hall Exhibitions in 1933 and 1934’ delivered at the 1979 V&A symposium held in association with the Arts Council exhibition Thirties, British Art and Design before the War at the Hayward Gallery; another early article developed from a paper given at the Association of Art Historians Annual Conference that formed the basis for ‘Design and Empire: British Design in the 1920s’, in Art History, June 1980. More recently, at the 10+1 Back to the Future; the Future in the Past ICDHS Conference in Barcelona in 2018, I grappled with realities that have increasingly preoccupied my thinking in a talk on ‘Design and Design History in Post-Brexit Britain: Looking Forwards, Looking Backwards’. At a time when debates about devolution and regionalism continue to proliferate, alongside such events as the opening of the V&A Dundee, how do we meaningfully define British, English, Scottish, or Welsh design? Furthermore, with the decline of the Empire and the changing ethnic complexities of the British nation over the past century, how far is it possible to provide a coherent and meaningful design historical narrative amidst such considerations? This presentation will take the form of a structured ‘thinking aloud’ rather than the delivery of a fully ‘resolved’ position- Professor Emeritus Jonathan M Woodham.
These seminars follow a new series of PhD seminars which take place on the same day and in the same location at 2-3.30pm. More info about the PhD seminars can be found here.