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Slade Archives

The Slade has an extensive archive which includes papers, photographs, class lists, student records and artefacts dating throughout the school’s history at UCL.

Since 1871, UCL’s Slade School of Fine Art has educated and trained generations of world-renowned artists. Together with materials held in UCL Records OfficeUCL Library Special Collections and UCL Art Museum, the archive collection contains rich evidence of the time artists have spent at the Slade. The digital collections featured here represent a small selection of archive and researchers are encouraged to consult relevant catalogues for each of these repositories. Further information can be found on the Slade Archive site.

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Collection descriptions

Slade Oral History Collection 

A number of oral history interviews were recorded in the 1990s with former students and staff. The interviews were conducted by alumnus and former Slade Archivist Stephen Chaplin as part of his research into the history of the School. (See also Stephen Chaplin’s Archive Reader, UCL Special Collections MS ADD 400. In 2013, funds generously provided by the Andor Charitable Trust enabled us to digitise these recordings, and this work has formed the basis of an ongoing oral history programme.

Interview highlights are currently accessible. Full interviews are available, subject to access restrictions. For information about the oral history programme contact: slade.enquiries@ucl.ac.uk.

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Slade Archive Reader

The Slade Archive Reader, compiled by the former Slade Archivist Stephen Chaplin, is a 4-volume unpublished work, covering the years 1868 to 1975. It includes a detailed index and is useful introductory resource for researchers seeking a general understanding of the School’s history and archival holdings.

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Slade Foundation Letters

Collection of letters written between May 1868 and March 1871, relating to the foundation of the Slade School of Art at UCL in 1871. The letters contain a wealth of information and opinion concerning the function and organisation of art education in Victorian London. They also provide a detailed explanation of the structure and ethos of the future Slade School.

Alongside the digital copies are Martin Postle’s transcriptions, published in The Volume of the Walpole Society (volume 58, 1995/1996). To access the transcription, click on the additional PDF in the object field. Martin’s original article The Foundation of the Slade School of Fine Art: Fifty-Nine Letters in the Record Office of University London is available through JSTOR.

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