Black Mountain College Project
 

Gathering in the lobby of Robert E. Lee Hall. North Carolina State Archives, Black Mountain College Project, 253.11.

STUDENT EXPERIENCE IN EXPERIMENTAL EDUCATION IN THE EARLY YEARS
(1933-43)

Section 2: Teachers and Teaching: Outside the Classroom

       

INTRODUCTION TO THE SUNLEY PROJECT AND DOCUMENTS

Description of the Study by Robert Sunley
*   Letter to the Students
*   Guidelines
*   Brief Biographies of
    Contributors

*   Brief Biographies of
    Faculty Mentioned in
    the Memoirs
*

SECTION 1. ROLE OF THE ARTS

    Statement by Robert
    Sunley


The artistic process as
    a major goal.


*   Individual, active
    anticipation was
    fostered but not
    required.

*   Focus on really “seeing”
    and “thinking” for
    oneself, not on the
    production of art.


Self-direction, self-
    discipline, initiative,
    development of the
    whole person....

The arts were diffused
    throughout the
    education ....    

 

In General

Robert Bliss: The other activities: work, social, travel, and especially general meetings were vital aspects of the educational process and the intent was to produce informed, aware, responsible, socialized individuals. Involvement was a choice. Participation was voluntary, not orchestrated but difficult to avoid.

Harold Raymond: The ideal was a student who participated in a number of community activities such as plays, concerts, social evenings and college governance but not necessarily all of them, or on particular occasions.... Personally I found living in the community stimulating and educationally valuable especially in areas unrelated to my studies, such as concerts, plays, and discussions of art and philosophy.

Sue Spayth Riley: As I look back, I think the interweaving of the natural beauty and the ever present sound of classical music in one form or another – concerts in the evening, Bach cantatas practiced, madrigals echoing, visiting artists – all created for me a rich and deep experience that will be with me always.

Robert Sunley: Being at Black Mountain was an immersion, more than a set of discrete classes; I lived in an atmosphere in which many different things took place, all somehow part of an overall experience. Classes were part of this, separate but still not separate. I learned from some classes which I never "took"—I absorbed quite a lot from Albers's and Rice's classes by standing by, talking, listening, looking—all in passing, not formally.

 

SECTION 2. TEACHERS AND TEACHING

Introduction

Formal Aspects of the
Curriculum 

   Class Size 
   Grades    
   Advisors 
   Junior Division  
   Senior Division  
   Graduation

Methods of Teaching
   General

   John Andrew Rice 
   Josef Albers 
   Erwin Straus 
   Robert Wunsch 
   Others


Personalities of Faculty
  
John Rice  
   Josef Albers 
   Robert
Wunsch 
   Heinrich
Jalowetz  
   Others 

Outside the Classroom
   In General  
   The Work Program 
   Visitors -
   Trips 
   Drama 
   Interlude  
   Lectures, Concerts 
   Informal Interchange