Slade School of Fine Art
Other names: Department of Fine Arts (]1871-78), Slade School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture (from 1878)
Foundation date: 1871
Active: 1871 -
Function: Art school
Policy: Courses of study:
The first University College London calendar/prospectus that lists a Department of the Fine Arts dates from 1871-1872. It states that 'in the Slade Schools, the study of the living model will be considered of the first and paramount importance, the study of the antique being put in second place, and used as a means of improving the style of the students from time to time'. The prospectus goes on to note that in contrast to 'most English Schools of Art' that insist upon preliminary training in study from the antique, Slade students would attend a general course (entirely under the direction of the Professor of the school) that would include instruction in drawing from the Antique, from the nude model and from the draped model. In addition to this course the school would provide evening classes in drawing and modelling.
It appears that this format remained largely unchanged until 1882-1883.
The 1883-1884 prospectus lists the courses of study in more detail: these included drawing from the antique and life (all students were required to take this course), painting from the antique and life (students could take this course based on 'their proficiency), sculpture, etching (taught for one day per week), and composition. These courses remained unchanged until 1900. From 1887-1888 to 1893-1894 students could also study animals (brought in to the school - presumably from life).
The 'Department of the Fine Arts' is first listed in 1871-1872 as 'including Drawing, Painting and Sculpture'. The prospectuses from 1872-1873 to 1876-1877, record that modelling classes were taught in the evenings only. From 1877-1878 to 1879-1880, there is no discussion of provision for modelling classes.
From 1880-1881 to 1882-1883, sculpture is listed under a separate heading and it is noted that 'a qualified instructor [not named] will attend for the purpose of giving lessons to Students who may wish to attend a Class for Modelling and Sculpture'. From 1883-1884 to 1892-1893, the Professor of the College [Alphonse Legros] taught modelling in clay.
In 1883-1884 students were asked to provide their own clay, but from 1884-1885 onwards clay and other materials were supplied by the college (although students had to provide their own modelling tools).
In 1884-1885 instruction was additionally given in making medals and ornamental vases as part of the sculpture course.
From 1893-1894 to 1898-1899, a 'teacher of sculpture' was appointed [George Frampton] to teach 'modelling in clay from the human figure, making medals, etc'. In 1899-1900 sculpture is not listed in the prospectus.
There is no sculpture listed between 1899-1900 to 1910-1911.
Rules: The 1871-1872 calendar describes the special provisions that were going to be made for women who wished to attend the school. These included a women only class in the study of the draped model. It is noted that 'the buildings and their approaches have also been carefully designed in such a way as too make due provision for the admission of Ladies as Students of the Fine-Art-School. The structural arrangements will render it easy to keep the Ladies Classes quite distinct from the others, if it should be thought desirable to maintain such separation; and in any case, there will be entrances and other accommodation reserved for the exclusive use of the Ladies, for whom a female attendant will be provided'.
It is recorded in the Annual General Meeting Report of 1872, that after some discussion it was decided that women were permitted to compete for scholarships offered by the school. Woman proved to be frequent recipients of awards at the school. For example, between 1872 and 1875 four women and four men were awarded the Slade Scholarship in Fine Art (see the 'event' entry attached to this record), and the first two recipients of the award in 1872 were women.
In the 1875-1876 calendar it is noted that the number of students was limited to one hundred due to the 'insufficiency of the accommodation of the Fine Art School'.
History or description: Classes were held in the North Wing of the College. The 'school' was set up as a department of the University College London in 1871. It was named the 'Department of the Fine Arts, Including Drawing, Painting and Sculpture' until 1878-1879 when it is listed as 'Department of Fine Arts. Slade School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture'. However, Professors were listed as 'Slade Professor' from the school's foundation.
Building of the school began in 1871, and the first session commenced in September 1872. The Annual General Meeting Report of 1872, notes that 'the Act of 1869, which specified "The Fine Arts" as branches of education for which the College was authorized to provide the means' meant that the school could be set up. Funding was provided for the establishment of the school by Felix Slade's 'executors'.
Exhibitions, Courses, Meetings and other Events
Organized Sculpture Classes (Slade School of Fine Art), 1872
Classes were still running in 1951-1952, the final year sampled for this database.
Organized Slade Scholarship (Slade School of Fine Art), 1872-1895
Organized Slade Prizes (Slade School of Fine Art), 1872-1952
Assistant principals included H. Toner
Listed as Assistant Professor.
Assistant principals included Frederick Brown
September 1918 - July 1919
Listed as 'Emeritus Professor of Fine Art, is assisting Professor Tonks during the War'.
Assistant teachers included Francis Derwent Wood
According to Obituary of J. Harvard Thomas in 'The Morning Post', May 1924
Assistant teachers of modeling included George W. Meldrum
September 1934 - July 1946
Listed as an assistant teacher of sculpture. Last listed in the 1945-1946 prospectus.
Gave scholarship to Frederick Edward McWilliam
Robert Ross leaving scholarship, used to travel to France.
Lecturers included Hugh Hutton Stannus
Listed as lecturer in applied art.
Principals included Edward John Poynter
September 1871 - June 1876
Listed as Professor of Fine Art.
Principals included Alphonse Legros
September 1876 - June 1893
Listed as Slade Professor. The 1885 'Calendar' notes that instruction in sculpture was provided by Legros (p. 104). Legros is listed in these roles until 1892-1893.
Principals included Frederick Brown
September 1893 - 1918
Principals included Henry Tonks
September 1918 - July 1930
Listed as a Professor from 1918-1919 onwards.
Principals included Randolph Schwabe
Principals included W.M. Coldstream
Still listed as Principal in the 1951-1952 prospectus, the last year sampled for this project.
Professors included Alphonse Legros
1873 (Circa) - 1893 (Circa)
Professors included J.H. Middleton
See Royal Academy, 'Annual Report, 1889', (1890), p. 50.
Professors included James Havard Thomas
1915 - 1921
Professors of modeling included Alfred Horace Gerrard
Listed as a Professor of Sculpture from 1948-1949 onwards. Gerrard is still listed as Professor in the 1951-1952 prospectus, the final year sampled for this database.
Students included Samuel Rabin
Studied at the school for three years: see Geoff Hassell, 'Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts', (1995), p. 142, no dates are given.
Students included Sophia Rosamond Praeger
Enrolled to study 'Fine Art and Fine Art Anatomy'
Students included Elsie Marian Henderson
1903 - 1905
Students included Arnrid Banniza Johnston
1914 - 1921
Based on information in Parkes (1931), p. 125
Students included Ralph Nuttall-Smith
Geoff Hassell notes that Nuttall-Smith studied at Slade from 1920. See G. Hassell, \'Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts\', (1995), p. 133.
Students included John Luke
Students included Frederick Edward McWilliam
Studied Painting & Drawing with Sculpture as a subsidiary subject.
Students included Ronald Pope
1945 - 1948
He began studying painting and then switched to sculpture.
Students included Rosemary Young
1948 - 1952
Geoff Hassell notes that Young studied at the school from 1948 to 1952: see 'Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts', (1995), p. 182.
Teachers included F.J, Slinger
September 1872 - June 1893
Listed as assistant teacher of the day classes. From 1877 onwards listed as 'assistant'.
Teachers included W.F. Spencer
Listed as assistant teacher of the evening classes. It is noted in the 1872-1873 'Calander' that Spencer 'is specially qualified to give instruction in modelling, and Students wishing to study this branch of Art must attend these Courses' (p. 44).
Teachers included Henry Tonks
September 1893 - 1898
Listed as an assistant.
Teachers included Walter Westley Russell
September 1895 - July 1927
Listed as an assistant. From 1921-1922 onwards Russell is listed as 'Assistant Professor'. Last listed as a teacher in 1926-1927.
Teachers included P.W. Steer
Listed as an Assistant Professor from 1921-1922 onwards.
Teachers included Reginald Butler
Listed as an assistant teacher. The type of course is not specified but this was probably sculpture. Butler is still listed as a teacher at the school in the 1951-1952 prospectus, the last volume sampled for this project.
Teachers of modeling included George James Frampton
September 1893 - June 1899
Listed as teacher of sculpture. From September 1896 onwards Frampton is also listed as an Assistant Professor. Last listed in the 1898-1899 prospectus.
Teachers of modeling included James Havard Thomas
September 1911 - July 1921
Listed as teacher of sculpture from 1910-1911 to 1914-1915, and as Professor of sculpture from 1915-1916 until 1920-1921.
Teachers of modeling included George Havard Thomas
September 1921 - 1933
Listed as an assistant teacher of sculpture. He died in 1933.
Teachers of modeling included Alfred Horace Gerrard
September 1925 - July 1948
Listed as an assistant teacher of sculpture. Not listed in 1939-1940 or 1940-1941, but listed again from 1941-1942 onwards.
Teachers of modeling included Ralph Nuttall-Smith
Geoff Hassell notes that Nuttall-Smith taught sculpture at the school in the \'immediate post-war year\' until he joined the staff at Camberwell in 1949 to teach drawing and painting. See G. Hassell, \'Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts\', (1995), p. 133.
Teachers of sculpture included Frederick Edward McWilliam
September 1948 - 1968
Listed as an assistant teacher of sculpture. McWilliam is still listed in the 1951-1952 prospectus, the final year sampled for this database.
Visitors included Edward John Poynter
September 1891 - July 1919
Last listed as a visitor in the 1918-1919 prospectus.
Visitors included Edward Onslow Ford
September 1893 - June 1899
Visitors included Frederick Brown
September 1920 - July 1940
Last listed as a visitor in the 1939-1940 prospectus.
Visitors included Walter Westley Russell
September 1927 - July 1947
Not listed between 1939-1940 and 1944-1945, but listed again from 1945-1946 to 1946-1947.
International Society press cuttings, from spring 1921
Obituary of J. Harvard Thomas in 'The Morning Post', May 1924.
University College London. Calendar. Session 1871-1872
pp. 160, 215
University College London. Calendar. Session 1872-1873
University College London. Calendar. Session 1875-1876
pp. 44-46, 79
University College London. Calendar. Session 1876-1877
University College London. Calendar. Session 1885-1886
University College London. Calendar. Session 1890-1891
University College London. Calendar. Session 1891-1892
University College London. Calendar. Session 1892-1893
University College London. Calendar. Session 1893-1894
University College London. Calendar. Session 1895-1896
University College London. Calendar. Session 1896-1897
University College London. Calendar. Session 1898-1899
University College London. Calendar. Session 1911-1912
University College London. Calendar. Session 1915-1916
University College London. Calendar. Session 1918-1919
University College London. Calendar. Session 1920-1921
University College London. Calendar. Session 1921-1922
University College London. Calendar. Session 1925-1926
University College London. Calendar. Session 1926-1927
University College London. Calendar. Session 1927-1928
University College London. Calendar. Session 1929-1930
University College London. Calendar. Session 1933-1934
University College London. Calendar. Session 1934-1935
University College London. Calendar. Session 1939-1940
University College London. Calendar. Session 1940-1941
pp. liii, 118, 561-62
University College London. Calendar. Session 1945-1946
University College London. Calendar. Session 1946-1947
University College London. Calendar. Session 1948-1949
University College London. Calendar. Session 1949-1950
University College London. Calendar. Session 1950-1951
University of London. University College Calendar, 1951-1952
Citing this record
'Slade School of Fine Art', Mapping the Practice and Profession of Sculpture in Britain and Ireland 1851-1951, University of Glasgow History of Art and HATII, online database 2011 [http://sculpture.gla.ac.uk/view/organization.php?id=msib4_1251917815, accessed 23 Mar 2017]