The History and Philosophy of Art Education

By Stuart MacDonald

An investigation of the development of art and design education in Italy, France, Britain, Germany, and the United States.

ISBN: 9780718891534


Dr. Macdonald investigates the continuous developments of art and design education in Italy, France, Britain, Germany, and the United States. The study traces the philosophies of teachers from the age of the guilds and the academies to today, and sets them in the context of the general education theories of their times.

Stuart Macdonald clarifies the whole field of art education for research and teaching purposes. He points out that the knowledge of the principles and methods of art education is essential for a true understanding of the art of different periods. He makes clear that art education should be studied within the existing education disciplines of history, philosophy, psychology, and sociology of education.

Essentially factual, using many quotations from primary sources not generally available, this book gives a disciplined grounding in a branch of the history of education, and describes the philosophies which continue to govern courses in Art and Design.

This finely illustrated book provides a vivid review of the history of art teaching.

Additional information

Dimensions 234 × 156 mm
Pages 400

Trade Information LPOD

About the Author

Stuart Macdonald gained an international reputation when The History and Philosophy of Art Education was first published in Britain, the USA and Japan. He holds an M.Ed and a PhD of Manchester University, and is a practising painter and book-illustrator who has taught students pottery, fabric-printing and book-crafts. This experience led him to write about the great teachers of the Arts and Crafts Movement, such as William Morris, Walter Crane, and W.R. Lethaby.

Macdonald has lectured on teachers’ courses at the Royal College of Art, at national conferences, and at many leading institutions of art education. In 1982 he was elected the founder editor of the Journal of Art & Design Education, which within four years had subscribers in over forty countries world-wide.



1. Guilds, Academies, Societies, and Institutes
2. Academic Principles
3. The Petitioner and the Politicians
4. The Schools of Design
5. The Philosophies of Hayden, Dyce, and Wilson
6. Cole Acquires a Kingdom
7. Sociological – Art Education for Whom?
8. Schools of the Department of Science and Art
9. A National System for Public Art Education
10. The Move to South Kensington
11. Payment on Results in Art Education
12. The Philosophy of the South Kensington Circle
13. America Imports Cole’s System
14. The Swing to Fine Art
15. The Slade and Its Concept of Drawing
16. The French Ateliers
17. From Applied Art to Design
18. The Recognition of Child Art
19. University and Polytechnic
20. Basic Design and Visual Education

Table of Dates
Index of Names
Index of Subjects


Endorsements and Reviews

This is a very welcome reprint, and, just for once, the publishers’ blurb is spot-on. When this book first hit the stands it was unique, and assuredly its contents have been the launch pad for several later studies. Macdonald’s style remains highly readable and his narrative just as fascinating as it was at first. Anyone studying the subject, or training to teach, will find the subject essential.
Julian Freeman, Sussex Downs College, in The Art Book