Royal Designers for Industry & Britain Can Make It, 1946

Black and white portrait of Hans Schleger

Hans Schleger

Graphic Designer (1898-1976) Born on 29th December 1898 in Kempen, Prussia to Jewish parents, Schlesinger shortened his surname to Schleger when he was twenty years old, after his family moved to Berlin in 1904. He attended the Kunstgewerbeschule to study painting and drawing (1918-21) and took a strong interest in the principles of the Bauhaus….

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Black and white portrait of Basil Spence sporting a tweed suit and a moustache

Basil Spence

Architect (1907-1976) Basil Urwin Spence was born in Bombay on 13 August 1907. At the age of twelve he was sent to Scotland, his parents’ homeland, for his education. Having demonstrated a facility for drawing he attended Edinburgh College of Art in 1925 and heard Walter Gropius HonRDI lecture to the students. Before completing his…

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Black and whit portrait of Alan Reynolds standing by a stone plague

(Alan) Reynolds Stone

Engraver and Designer (1909-1979) Named after his ancestor, Sir Joshua Reynolds this son of an Eton housemaster was born at Eton College on 13 March 1909. He went to Magdalene College, Cambridge to read history before starting work in 1932 as a graduate apprentice at Cambridge University Press. Here he met their typographical adviser Stanley…

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Black and white portrait of Marianne Straub in a stripey shirt and jacket

Marianne Straub

Textile Artist (1909-1994) Marianne Straub was born on 23rd September 1909 in Amriswil, Switzerland. Much of her childhood was spent immobilised in a tubercular ward. She developed an exceptionally good memory for pattern, texture and colour and in 1928 she gained a place at the Kunstgewerbeschule in Zurich to study weaving. Heinz Otto Hurlimann, who…

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Black and white portrait of Allan Walton in a striped suit and tie posed sideways looking into the camera.

Allan Walton

Textile and Interior Designer (1892-1948) Born at Cheadle Hulme, Cheshire on 20th October 1891, Allan Walton was educated at Harrow School. He went on to study architecture in 1911 with Arnold Mitchell’s practice – the two men most probably met at The Arts Club to which Walton had been elected the previous year. However, Walton…

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Black and white portrait of Neville Ward from the chest up wearing a suit and tie and looking to the side.

Neville Ward

Architect and Designer (1922-1989) Arthur Neville Ward was born on 5th June 1922. Educated at Wade Deacon Grammar School, Widnes, he graduated from Liverpool University School of Architecture and was admitted an Associate of the Royal Institute of British Architects (1944). He then read town planning at Edinburgh College of Art. Ward enjoyed working with…

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Black and white portrait of John Waterer smoking a pipe

John Waterer

Leathergoods Designer (1892-1977) John Waterer was born in Peckham, London, on 9th August 1892. Although a talented musician, Waterer took an apprenticeship in the luggage department of a leather goods company in 1909, to which he returned after his service in the Royal Navy during the First World War. He then became Managing Director of…

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Black and white portrait of Edward Bawden in his later years

Edward Bawden

Artist and designer (1903-1989) A prolific printmaker, graphic designer, illustrator and painter Bawden was born in Braintree, Essex in 1903. His early education took place at the local high school then at the Friends’ School in Saffron Walden. An only child, Bawden spent much of his time drawing and from the age of fifteen he…

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Black and white portrait of Wells Coates looking fiercely at the camera while smoking a cigarette

Wells Coates

Architect (1895-1958) Born on 17th December 1895 of Canadian parents in Tokyo, Japan Wells Coates was educated informally by his mother, who had trained as an architect, and he also learnt calligraphy and craft skills from Japanese scholars. At the age of seventeen he joined his father and a family friend on a world cruise…

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