By Liz Bruchet, on 21 June 2013
We’re delighted to announce that the Slade has recently received a grant from the Andor Charitable Trust to develop a Slade Oral History programme.
During our archive explorations, we (re)discovered an invaluable collection of oral history recordings undertaken with former students and staff. The interviews were conducted in the 1990s by the Slade’s former archivist Stephen Chaplin. These audio recordings provide fascinating insight into the impressions and experiences of former students and staff, many of who are no longer alive. However, they are now in danger of eroding and urgently require digitisation. So we appealed to the Andor Charitable Trust who has agreed that these treasures are worth saving.
Alongside our efforts to preserve the existing recordings, we hope to undertake a series of new oral history interviews. Much of what takes place in the life of an art school is conversational and informal and as a result, rarely formally documented. The use of oral history recordings will enrich our existing archive records, allowing us to capture some of these anecdotes and conversations – and help us map the networks of connections between individuals, their art practices and the wider influences that draw them together.