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NEWS

Dip AD abolished as councils merge

The controversial decision to replace DipAD by Batchelor of Arts coincides with the publication of the Gann report which recommends changes in the administration of vocational courses in art and design.
From 1 September budding students of art or design at advanced level will have to enrol for a BA degree with honours through the Council for National Academic Awards instead of DipAD through the National Council for Diplomas in Art and Design. This follows on automatically from the amalgamation of the two councils this September.
The decision to form one council, to be known as the Council for National Academic Awards, was influenced by the incorporation of many art colleges into polytechnics and the growing trend to cross-disciplinary and joint subject courses. Very often both councils found themselves validating courses in the same institution.
The amalgamation follows intensive discussions between the two councils since their decision in February 1972 to explore the possibility of a merger.
The present CNAA membership will be augmented by additional members in the field of art and design education to be appointed by the Secretary of State. A fifth committee for art and design will be added to the present committees for arts and social studies, education, research degrees, and science and technology. To preserve continuity, present members of the NCDAD have been asked to serve as the nucleus of the new committee.
The NCDAD's specialist panels for fine art, graphic design, three dimensional design, textiles and fashion, and complementary studies will remain unaltered until August 1975 when new nominations will be invited.
Students who are awarded a 'good Honours' classification within the meaning of the Burnham Primary, Secondary and Further Education Reports will be eligible to receive the normal salary increments for the possession of a good Honours Degree. There will also be a system of backdating the change to BA as far back in 1966. Students awarded the DipAD at any time from 1966 to 1974 inclusive will be allowed to convert it.
The NCDAD's postgraduate Higher Diplomas will likewise be converted to Master of Arts degrees. The one year courses however will in future be of one calendar year's duration instead of one academic year as is the case now. There will be no retrospective conversions of Higher Diplomas to the MA degree.
Entry requirements for the time being will be the same as for DipAD courses except that there will be a minimum age of 18. The minimum required will be five O-levels, or three O-levels plus one A-level, or two O-levels plus two A-levels, or three A-levels.
The main recommendation of the Gann report, published by the Department of Education and Science is that a national body for vocational courses in art and design up to advanced level with a title to reflect its autonomous status be set up. The report proposes that membership of the body should cover education, industry and professional bodies. It should approve and devise courses, establish and assess standards, and award qualifications.

Spanish copiers meet opposition

Spanish wallpaper manufacturers have encountered an obstacle to their five year long foray into copy wallpaper. The Spanish Ministry of Industry has decreed, after much British insistence, that a system of tighter control should operate over wallpaper design.
Spain started to manufacture wallpaper five years ago, but they have developed quickly and achieved a high standard in a short time. Local copying of German or British designs in Spain led to an obviously reduced cost of that design. Objections to this practice were raised at the International Manufacturers' Conference in 1973 and a report sent to the Spanish Government.
The Spanish decree is aimed at avoiding the presence in the market of 'marginal products' which are frustrating legally established manufacturers. It creates a Register of Manufacturers which will serve to make wallpapers easily identifiable on the market and distinguish original designs from copies.

Minister calls in planning applications

Bruce Millan, minister of state at the Scottish Office, has said that the Government intends to establish a clear planning framework within which its strategy for oil in Scotland can be developed. This would provide the means for central and local government to ensure that the economic benefits of oil were not obtained at an unacceptable cost to Scotland's environment.
The Minister announced a number of steps towards this strategy. These are: the Secretary of State proposes to direct planning authorities to send him automatically details of major oil-related planning applications which they receive. At present, the Secretary of State does not necessarily know what planning applications have been lodged with local planning authorities. This will provide comprehensive and up-to-date knowledge of applications, to help the Government assess the overall impact of oil development in Scotland and to exert firmer control over it.
This will be supplemented by technical advice from the Scottish Office to help local planning authorities to assess the impact of proposed developments.
The Government accepts that everything possible should be done to reduce procedural or other delays, and in order to explore ways of improving the inquiry process and making it more effective the Scottish Office will shortly convene a group including representatives of the Council on Tribunals, the Faculty of Advocates, and the Law Society of Scotland to consider this question.
The Minister of State said there will be no major changes in the balance between the needs of developers and the rights of local communities - this in any case would need legislation. The aim would be to conduct the whole inquiry process as quickly, economically and efficiently as possible.

Smaller London patent office will survive

With the unofficially certain introduction of a central EEC patent office in Munich before 1980, the workload of the London Patent Office will be reduced by more than half, according to comptroller general Edward Armitage.
But he described as 'nonsense' any suggestion that the London office would close down. He was replying to fears that 600 London office specialists would lose their jobs.
Patent Office work has risen to some 60,000 applications processed each year, but most of this increase is multiple-country cross-patenting for industrial leaders like the US, Germany, Japan and France. An overwhelming proportion of this work would pass to Munich: national offices will be left only with patent applications limited to their territory, and nowhere else in the EEC.
Meanwhile, increases in inventions are minimal. One estimate predicts only 20,000 applications yearly for the London office, a third of the present load.

Urban nightmare warning

Barbara Ward, Lady Jackson, economist and author of Spaceship Earth, called for better planning of urban settlements in the RIBA Annual Discourse she gave in May. She stressed that the international 'energy equation' cannot work out right without a revamp of current settlement patterns and habits.
The three main factors in her equation are a rapidly growing and increasingly urban world population, limited food resources and ever scarcer and more costly energy supplies.
Miss Ward expressed hopes that the 1976 UN Conference on Human Settlements at Vancouver, Habitat 2000, where she will be a principal contributor, will help to find a thread through the maze of problems, though not a Minotaur at the end. Miss Ward was co-author with Rene Dubos of Only One Earth, the unofficial report on the 1972 Stockholm conference on the environment.
She tolled the death knell of the 'inadvertent city' that has been shaped by cheap energy. Though most of the world's population growth will take place in cities, the rural population will nonetheless double by the year 2000. With such a spectre looming it is no longer adequate to leave market forces to determine land uses.
You can't have any community, including a world community, without sharing, Miss Ward pointed out. It no longer seems likely that the wealth of developed nations will 'trickle down' to poorer ones. The rise in fuel prices has cost the Third World $15,000 million on their balance of payments overnight. Deliberate sharing seems necessary.
A lady with facts and figures at her fingertips, Miss Ward noted that one less hamburger per week per American could make up the world protein deficit. On a slightly different tack, what was the point, she asked, of fertilising golf courses?
Communities, she suggested, could be re-grouped so that transport mainly by foot and bicycle is feasible. Settlements should also take maximum advantage of mass transport. Intermediate settlements could reduce 'the great hazard of an uncontrollable flood to the cities, particularly in the less developed nations. A vision of Bombay with 20 million citizens, Calcutta with 30 million or Mexico City with 20 million is otherwise a plausible nightmare.'
Barbara Ward is currently Professor of International Economic Development at Columbia University and President of the International Institute of Environmental Affairs.

Lettering artists could make a comeback

The role of the lettering artist could and should be revived claims Henry Davy, President of the British Printing Industries Federation.
'When the designer, concerned with the corporate image and house style, took over he decided to use type faces, since he could be sure of keeping the design consistent throughout a wide range of uses. You were placed in the position of having to reproduce the type faces accurately and so you developed your process to meet this,' he told members of the National Association of Engravers and Die Stampers at their annual lunch.
'A new situation is now arising,' he went on, 'where with the introduction of phototype-setting and the ease with which new type faces can be created by transfer type, the role of the lettering artist, which was almost dead, has now been revived, and there is scope here for the artist to work closely with the skilled engraver.
'I would like to propose,' Mr Davy continued, 'that you could advance still further with your policy of interesting the designer in this process. I am sure it would be worthwhile discussing through design colleges the idea of design students doing a project on engraving and die stamping, so they could use their imagination to push the process a bit further beyond the bounds at which it is at the moment.
'What Thomas Bewick did to wood engraving 200 years ago, which was to take it a step further into a very fine art and to produce results which until then had not been achieved, could I believe be done by some young designers who were made interested and excited about the great possibilities of your process.'

Stronger planning call from National Trust

Long before the energy crisis brought oil, it was obvious that Scotland was entering a period of rapid change - economic, physical and social - perhaps as fundamental as that caused by the first Industrial Revolution. This is the central point made by the National Trust for Scotland in its 43rd annual report.
'The natural inclination to realise with all possible speed this uncovenanted and hitherto unsuspected asset is now intensified,' states the Marquess of Bute, Chairman of Council and Executive Committee. There is therefore the greater need for an overall planning strategy, and for that more explicit and sensitive Government initiative born of constructive national dialogue, which the Trust has urged upon Ministers since January 1973.
'It is unfortunate that current controversy and public apprehension over oil-related developments,' he continues in his report, 'coincide with preparations for a radical reorganisation of local government in 1975, the first for some 40 years. In general, the ultimate result should be to make regional and local planning more effective by strengthening planning departments and co-ordinating policies.
'During the transition period, however, re-adjustment is not going to be easy, especially in those areas under intense pressure to accept and provide for developments of an unfamiliar scale.'

Alternative energy thinktank is set up

A technology think-tank has been set up at Harwell to advise on alternative energy sources.
Funded by 200 000 for the current year and 300,000 for next year, a dozen or so scientists will explore non-nuclear forms of energy such as wind, geothermal and solar energy, waste heat utilisation, nuclear process heat and the 'hydrogen economy' which is director Keith Dawson's own particular interest.
The unit will not conduct any laboratory research, but carry out paper studies of new ideas. Dr Dawson believes the unit will have to draw on outside expertise if it is to do its job properly. But persuading many scientists to help may pose a problem for the unit, since there is the feeling in the academic community that a unit of this type attached so closely to Harwell cannot conduct itself as independently as envisaged.

Harder line from new SIAD President

David Carter, who has taken over as SIAD President, says that the Society should concentrate on the problems of design education and strengthen its regional activities.
Mr Garter, who was this year's chairman of the Design Council Consumer Product Awards Panel, considers that the SIAD is sitting in the middle of a lot of activity on design education standards, many of which have improved because of SIAD pressure. But it still needs to develop more definite views on this subject.
He would like to see SIAD representatives as governors on every art and design college in Britain, for instance.

Record broken

DESIGN once again broke its circulation record last year. The ABC monthly average circulation for this period was 20,346 compared with 18,932 in the previous year. The monthly average paid circulation for this period was 19,258 as compared with 17,796 copies in the previous year.

Canadian books in limelight

Canadian book design and production is about to come under the scrutiny of the newly formed Canadian Book Design Committee. The committee is staging a competition for which books published in Canada between 1 January 1973 and 31 March 1974 will be eligible. Designers of the three best books will be awarded cash prizes of $1500, $1000 and 500, there will be 22 'merit awards' and an additional $200 prize for a photographer or illustrator.
The committee, which consists of representatives from the Department of Industry, Trade and Commerce, some 30 graphic designers, paper suppliers, publishers and printers, have appointed an international jury and will organise an exhibition of 25 books which will travel throughout North America and Europe. The winning designer will be offered a commission to design the catalogue for the exhibition.

People

COLIN CORNESS, deputy chairman and managing director of Redland, has been elected chairman of the Building Centre Trust and The Building Centre Limited with GONTRAN GOULDEN as vice-chairman. JOHN GEORGE has been appointed to the new post of chief executive of he Building Centre Group.
JAMES RAE has been appointed as Glasgow's Director of planning.
SENER, the Spanish design consultant, has opened a London office at 8a Lower Grosvenor place, SWI.
JOHN S BONNINGTON PARTNERSHIP is the new name for the architectural practice of Sir Basil Spence Bonnington & Collins.
HARRY PRIESTLEY, director and deputy general manager of Nairn Floors, has been re-elected chairman of the British Floorcovering Manufacturers' Association.
SIR ROBERT GRIEVE, professor of town and regional planning at Glasgow University, has been awarded the gold medal of the Royal Town Planning Institute, only the eighth in 21 years.
GRAHAM PRESCOTT, interior designer, has formed a partnership to be known as Designs Unlimited with RALPH BELL, furniture designer, concerned with interior, furniture and graphic design and furniture direct retailing.
ANGELA FOX and JACKIE LYND have won 200 travelling scholarships awarded by the British ceramic Manufacturers' Federation.
TONY ULLMAN has resigned as director of design of City Industrial to start his own design practice and consultancy service.

PROFESSOR RICHARD GUYATT becomes pro-rector of the Royal College of Art, JOHN MILLER becomes professor of environmental resign, ROBERT HERITAGE becomes head of the school of Furniture Design, and PHILIP POPHAM becomes head of the School of silversmithing and Jewellery.

 

 

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