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Hudnut Drops Design 1, Based on Gropius Ideas

Gropius, Filipowski Protest the Action

By Malcolm D. Rivkin

Design 1 will be discontinued at the end of this term, Joseph Hudnut 09, Dean of the Faculty of Design, disclosed yesterday. The School of Design's basic course in the theory of design, it embodies the ideas of Walter Gropius, professor of Architecture, and the Bauhaus school.

Following Hudnut's announcement, Gropius and Richard Filipowaki, instructor in the course, issued statements decrying the action.

Hudnut gave two reasons for the move.

He said that Design 1 was originally set up as a two-year experiment with $25,000 of Corporation funds. The two years are now up, the funds are exhausted, and the School of Design no longer has the where-withal to support the course.

"It is a good general introduction to design courses, but not a necessary one, and we no longer have the means to keep it," Hudnut said.

"It also takes too much time," he continued. Of the 42 class hours a week that the first year graduate student must take, Design 1 takes up 20. It is not a specialized course, he stated, and it does not leave enough time for the students' professional training.

Dean Against It.

In disagreeing with Hudnut Gropius said. "Although my whole faculty is in favor of the course and almost all the architecture schools have such a course after the model of the Bauhaus, here it is being discontinued because the dean is against it and the means are not available to keep it going.

"I have been fighting for this course for 14 years. The faculty of the School of Architecture is of the opinion that this course is basic, and for anything which is basic the time has to be found."

He stressed the fact that Design 1 is representative of a whole theory which has been experimented on since 1919. "The Bauhaus' success has not only been local but international and I definitely think this course should be continued.

"It opens the eyes of the beginner in design to the basic problems of space, form, and color," he continued.

Gropius stated that President Conant gave him the money for the course two years ago and "it is a pity that after it has been built up and been so successful that the teachers have to be given notice now."

Filipowski, who has already been approached by another University which wants the course, said that he hated to leave Harvard. He felt that his experiment has been successful in stimulating the student's own initiative and ideas, and it would be terrible to do away with the course.

"The course was designed as a bridge and a transition phase between the student's general education and his professional work in architecture. Without some type of concentration on the whole realm of design, the student will become a narrow specialist," he concluded.

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