FORTY YEARS OF PHOTOGRAPHY AT THE INSTITUTE OF DESIGN
We know that art itself cannot be taught, only the way to it. We have in the past given the function of art a formal importance, which segregates it from our daily existence, whereas art is always present where healthy and unaffected people live.
CHICAGO'S INSTITUTE OF DESIGN, established by László Moholy-Nagy in 1937 as the New Bauhaus, is the seminal place for the education of the modern artist-photographer. The New Bauhaus's original goal was to produce "universal designers," and its course of study offered an eclectic mix of science, art, and social studies.
WITHIN THE SMALL and, until recently, sealed world of photography the Institute of Design has been identified with that medium more than other visual arts schools are identified with any single medium in which their graduates work. This emphasis is the result of, but explains very little about, the intellectual context in which the school functions, a context that has proved a stronger influence on photography (and on modern art) than any of its teachers or students or even the institute itself.
LÁSZLÓ MOHOLY-NAGY'S NEW VISION of a universal designer—one who could work in any and all media—created a new validity in America for the teaching of photography in higher education. Moholy made photography an important part of the curriculum at the New Bauhaus from the start, and, as more technology demanded more specialization, a succession of creative photographer-teachers nourished the photography program, adding their personal visions to Moholy's foundation ideas.
This chronology was prepared by John Grimes from school records and from interviews with teachers and individuals associated with the school. Ray Pearson's personal records supplied much otherwise unavailable information for the period 1937—55.
Students receiving Master's Degrees in Photography from the Institute of Design. *Indicates students whose thesis projects were in cinematography or animation. 1952 Jordan Bernstein, Marvin Newman, Floyd Dunphey 1954 Robert Fine 1955 Leon Lewandowski
Avison, David. In Panoramic Photography by Diana Edkins. New York: Gray Gallery, New York University, 1977. Callahan, Harry. The Multiple Image. Chicago: The Press of the Institute of Design, 1961. -. Harry Callahan Color. Providence: Matrix, 1980.