Collection OH - Oral History Recordings

Key Information

Reference code

OH

Title

Oral History Recordings

Date(s)

  • 2007-2014 (Creation)

Level of description

Collection

Extent

7 Items

Content and Structure

Scope and content

This collection comprises recorded interviews with the following former Glasgow School of Art staff and students:

  • OH/1 Ellen Cunningham (née Timney), Embroidery and Weaving student, 1960-1964
  • OH/2 Margaret Ferguson (née Dunn), Embroidery and Weaving student, 1946-1950
  • OH/3 Meg Pollok (née Clark), Embroidery and Weaving student, 1946-1951
  • OH/4 Margaret Grant (née Taylor), Interior Design student, 1946-1950 and member of staff, c1953-1979
  • OH/5 Malcolm Lochhead, Embroidery and Weaving student, 1966-1970
  • OH/6 Dugald Cameron, Industrial Design student, 1947-1962, member of staff, 1962-1999, and Director 1991-1999
  • OH/7 Conrad McKenna, Commercial Art student, 1939-1942 and 1946-1948, and member of staff,1950-1984
  • OH/8 Eirene Hunter (née Paton), Printed Textiles student c1952-53.

Please note that this material is not yet fully catalogued and therefore some items may not be accessible to researchers.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling

Accruals

System of arrangement

The recordings are listed chronologically according to the date they were created.

General Information

Name of creator

(fl c1970s-)

Biographical history

Liz Arthur was the curator of costume and textiles for Glasgow Museums and the Burrell Collection for many years. She is a former Chairman of the Renfrewshire Branch of the Embroiderer's Guild and has worked at the Glasgow School of Art in various capacities.  She is a researcher, exhibition curator, lecturer and writer. While writing 'Robert Stewart Design : 1946 - 95' she consulted Robert Stewart's family, friends & colleagues and made use of the Glasgow School of Art's Archives and Collections Centre. She has written a number of other books including, 'Kathleen Whyte : Embroiderer', 'Kathleen Whyte : Design in Embroidery', 'Margaret Swain : Scottish Embroidery', 'Twentieth Century Embroidery in Great Britain', 'Embroidery for Religion and Ceremonial' and 'Embroidered Church Kneelers'.

Name of creator

(1939-)

Biographical history

Dugald Cameron OBE was Director of The Glasgow School of Art from 1991-1999. Dugald was born in Glasgow in 1939 and spent his early life near Clydebank. He was educated at the High School of Glasgow. After a number of false starts on leaving school, including a very short time as an apprentice in Rolls-Royce, he entered the Junior non-diploma class at The Glasgow School of Art in January 1957 at the inspired suggestion of Harry Jefferson Barnes, then Registrar and Deputy Director, and thereafter completed the Diploma Course and a Post-Diploma specialising in Industrial Design. He had the great good fortune to be taught drawing by W Drummond Bone, from Ayr, and design by James Goodchild and Joe McCrum. Winning the Trades House of Glasgow travelling scholarship in 1961, he visited Scandinavia which was then the focus of international design. Shortly after completing his post-diploma be became a part time teacher at GSA in December 1962, then Senior Lecturer in charge of Industrial Design in 1970, Head of Design in 1982 and Director of the School in 1991, retiring in October 1999. He had been appointed to a Chair in the Technische Hogeschool, Delft in 1970 but did not take it up. During much of that time he practised as a freelance industrial designer working for over forty UK and American companies and in 1977 with Alan Carlaw, established Squadron Prints, a small enterprise producing commercial lithographs of aircraft, ships and a few other subjects in profile. On retiral he became a Visiting Professor at the University of Strathclyde in the Department of Design, Manufacturing and Engineering Management and a Visiting Professor to the Department of Aerospace Engineering at The University of Glasgow. Throughout his life he has been sustained by his enthusiasms for railways, aviation and drawing and has written and compiled a number of books on aspects of Glasgow’s aviation and railway history and given many talks on Scotland’s aviation and railway history.

Name of creator

(fl 1960-)

Biographical history

Ellen Cunningham (née Timney) studied Embroidery and Weaving at The Glasgow School of Art between 1960-1964.

Name of creator

(fl1952-)

Biographical history

After leaving Glasgow School of Art where she qualified as a textile designer, Eirene worked for the United Africa Company as a studio designer. Marrying a Naval Officer meant a change in her life and she travelled the world with her husband and two sons, tackling any art oriented job that came her way from teaching to painting scenery for the stage. Two years in the United States of America gave her the opportunity and time to start her career in animal painting, a subject always close to her heart. She not only exhibited in the United States but also gained recognition as an animal painter working on commission. After returning to Britain she developed her own particular style of oil painting in which the animals appear in a natural setting - gun dogs working in shooting country or portraits of champion bulls on their owners' farms. The animals she has painted include many champions from both sides of the Atlantic - cattle, horses, sheep and dogs; but many are well loved pets or ponies who have no claim to fame.

Name of creator

(fl 1946-)

Biographical history

Margaret Ferguson (née Dunn) studied Embroidery and Weaving at The Glasgow School of Art between 1946-1950. She went on to train as a teacher at Jordanhill College of Education, Glasgow.

Name of creator

(fl 1946-)

Biographical history

Margaret Grant (née Taylor) studied Interior Design at The Glasgow School of Art between 1946-1950. She went on to teach Interior Design at the School between c1953-c1979 while also undertaking private interior design commissions.

Name of creator

(fl 1966-)

Biographical history

Malcolm Lochhead studied Embroidery and Weaving at The Glasgow School of Art between 1966-1970.

Name of creator

(1923-)

Biographical history

Conrad T J McKenna, born 8th March 1923, was admitted as a student to Glasgow School of Art in December 1939 at the age of 16. WW2 interrupted his studies when he was called up to the RAF in 1942, serving from then until 1946. He returned to Art School in 1946 and was awarded a Diploma in Commercial Art in 1948. He won several prizes and scholarships during his time at GSA, including the Robert Hart Bursary in 1941, the W.O. Hutchison Prize for Drawing in 1948, the Main Scholarship for Commercial Art in 1948 and a £120 Travelling Scholarship in 1949. Conrad was also a member of GSA staff from 1950-1984. His positions included: Visiting Staff, Design & Crafts 1953/54; Assistant, Design & Crafts 1954/55-1965/66; Assistant, General Course 1966/67-1970/71; Lecturer, First Year Course 1971-1972; Supervisor, Evening School 1972-1984. He spent a sabbatical year in 1962-1963 as a visiting lecturer in the Fine Art faculty of the University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi, Ghana, West Africa, returning to GSA until his retirement in 1984.

Name of creator

(fl 1946-)

Biographical history

Meg Pollok (née Clark) studied Embroidery and Weaving at The Glasgow School of Art between 1946-1951. She then went on to teach in this department at GSA.

Name of creator

(fl c1950s-)

Biographical history

Crissie White studied Embroidery and Weaving at The Glasgow School of Art between 1956-1960. She became Senior Lecturer in charge: Design (Embroidery and weaving) in 1974.

Name of creator

(1845-)

Administrative history

The Glasgow School of Art has its origins in the Glasgow Government School of Design, which was established on 6 January 1845. The Glasgow Government School of Design was one of twenty similar institutions established in the United Kingdom's manufacturing centres between 1837 and 1851. Set up as a consequence of the evidence given to the House of Commons Select Committee on Arts and their connection with Manufactures of 1835-1836, the Government Schools hoped to improve the quality of the country's product design through a system of education that provided training in design for industry. Somerset House was the first of such schools to be established, opening in 1837, and others followed throughout the provinces.

In 1853 the Glasgow Government School of Design changed its name to the Glasgow School of Art. Following the receipt of some funding from the Haldane Academy Trust, (a trust set up by James Haldane, a Glasgow engraver, in 1833), The Glasgow School of Art was required to incorporate the name of the trust into its title. Consequently, it became the Glasgow School of Art and Haldane Academy, although by 1891 the "Haldane Academy" was dropped from the title. Glasgow School of Art was incorporated in 1892. In 1901 the Glasgow School of Art was designated a Central Institution for Higher Art Education in Glasgow and the West of Scotland.

Initially the School was located at 12 Ingram Street, Glasgow, but in 1869, it moved to the Corporation Buildings on Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow. In 1897 work started on a new building to house the School of Art on Renfrew Street, Glasgow. The building was designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, former pupil of The Glasgow School of Art. The first half of the building was completed in 1899 and the second in 1909.

The Government Schools ran courses in elementary drawing, shading from the flat, shading from casts, chiaroscuro painting, colouring, figure drawing from the flat, figure drawing from the round, painting the figure, geometrical drawing, perspective, modelling and design. All these courses were introduced from the start at the Glasgow School apart from that of design. The course in design was the "summit of the system" where students came up with original designs for actual manufactures or decorative purposes and it was not until 1849, when Charles Heath Wilson became headmaster, that classes in design began to be taught. Also in this year Bruce Bell was engaged to teach mechanical and architectural drawing.

After 1853 the above pattern of courses was extended to 26 stages which formed the national curriculum for art schools. This system was known as the South Kensington system. An Art Masters could be awarded by gaining certificates in the available subjects. There was no restriction on entry and students could take as long as they wished to accumulate their passes before being awarded their Art Masters.

In 1901 the Glasgow School of Art was given the power to award its own diplomas. In the same year Art 91D classes for day school teachers commenced which were later known as the Art 55 classes. From 1901 to 1979 the School of Art awarded its own diplomas and thereafter it awarded degrees of the Council for National Academic Awards. In the 1970s the School of Fine Art and the School of Design were established. With the demise of the Council for National Academic Awards, from 1993 Glasgow University awarded the School's degrees in fine art and design. In 1885 the Glasgow School of Art taught architecture and building construction conforming to the South Kensington system. Following on from the designation of the School as a Central Institution and the empowerment of the School to award its own diplomas, the School and the Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical College worked together to produce a curriculum for a new course leading to a joint diploma.

In 1903 the joint Glasgow School of Architecture was established within the Glasgow School of Art in conjunction with the Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical College. For the new diploma design classes were to be taught at the School of Art and the construction classes at the Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical College. The first diplomas in architecture were awarded in 1910.

In 1924 the Glasgow School of Art became a university teaching institution when the University of Glasgow set up a BSc in Architecture which was to be taught at the School of Architecture. In 1964 the Royal College of Science and Technology (formerly the Royal Technical College, formerly the Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical College) merged with the Scottish College of Commerce to form the new University of Strathclyde. Following the merger the Glasgow School of Architecture came to an end, the last students transferring to Strathclyde degrees and graduating in 1968.

In 1970 the Mackintosh School of Architecture was established. It is housed within the Glasgow School of Art and forms that school's Department of Architecture. Its degrees are accredited by the University of Glasgow and its Head is the University's Professor of Architecture.

The Glasgow Government School of Design was originally managed, as were the other Government Schools, by the Board of Trade and a Committee of Management representing local subscribers. Then, in 1852, the Government Schools of Design were taken over by the Department of Practical Art. This Department was renamed the Department of Science and Art in 1853 and was located in South Kensington, London. The Committee of Management was replaced in 1892 by the Board of Governors. In 1898, control of the School was transferred again, this time to the Scotch Education Department (renamed the Scottish Education Department in 1918).

The School became academically independent in 1901 when it was free to develop its own curriculum and its own diplomas, subject to the approval of the Scottish Education Department. The chief executive of the School was the Headmaster, renamed Director in 1901, and a Secretary and Treasurer was responsible for all aspects of the administration of the School. As the School grew, other administrative posts were added.

Archival history

Custodial history

See Administrative / Biographical History.

Physical Description and Conditions of Use

Conditions governing access

Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections are open for research by appointment. For further details, please refer to our Access Policy @ https://gsaarchives.com/policies

This material is available to access in the Archives and Collections reading room for educational and research purposes. Requests for copies of the material should be submitted to The Archives and Collections Centre at The Glasgow School of Art.

Conditions governing reproduction

Application for permission to reproduce should be submitted to The Archives and Collections at The Glasgow School of Art.

Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use and condition of material.

For further details, please refer to our Reprographic Service Guide @ https://gsaarchives.com/policies

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical Description

The recordings are held as digital mp3 files. Transcripts exist for the majority of the recordings in word format.

Finding aids

Related Material

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related materials

DC 029 - Papers of Kath Whyte, Head of Embroidery at Glasgow School of Art, Scotland, c1909-1996

DC 073 - Papers of Conrad McKenna, student and staff member at The Glasgow School of Art, Scotland, c1940s-2010s

Related descriptions

Notes area

Note

Collection Historical Note

Recordings OH/1-5 were created by Liz Arther in 2007 as part of her research on Kathleen Whyte who was Head of Embroidery and Weaving at The Glasgow School of Art between 1948-1974. Additional interviews have since been made be the Archives and Collections team. These interviews cover the history of the School in general.

Alternative identifier(s)

Keywords/Tags

Place access points

People and Organisations

Genre access points

Administrative Information

Description identifier

GB 1694 OH

Institution identifier

GB 1694

Rules and/or conventions used

ISAD(G): General International Standard Archival Description - Second edition

Status

Level of detail

Processing information

  • Collection listed by Susannah Waters, Archives and Collections Manager, July 2016.
  • Catalogue exported from Archon and imported into AtoM during system migration, 2018-2019.

Language(s)

  • English

Script(s)

Sources

Archivist's note

Finding Aid Authors: Susannah Waters.

Archivist's note

© Copyright 2018 GSA Archives. All rights reserved.

Accession area