<< Chapter < Page Chapter >> Page >
Dr. William Camfield and Dominique de Menil, c. 1970. Courtesy of William Camfield.

A 1.3 mile exodus

In the fall of ’69, the de Menil group came to Rice. I had never planned to stay long in Texas, and had actually almost signed a contract at Brown University. I had bid the de Menils goodbye, and we were about to move to Rhode Island. But unbeknownst to us, there were already difficulties between the de Menils and the University of St. Thomas. They split ways in the spring and summer of ’69, and Rice was interested in picking up the people in the Arts [Department] at St. Thomas…a whole troop of us came over. The de Menils, without pressuring us, just asked if we would stay to help the transition, and Rice did too. We did—and we are still here. Rice had to find places for us, and the de Menils proposed a building that would fit in with the campus in terms of the type of brick work and historical reference and design, etc. But there wasn’t time for that, or people didn’t think there was time for that. So the decision was made to put those two buildings out there: the buildings that now house the Media Center and the Continuing Studies Program.

They were meant to be temporary buildings—yes!—but they are still there. And one of the arguments from a crusty old guy at Rice was, “Goddamn, I remember The University of Texas when they brought in these Quonset huts after WWII, and they were supposed to be temporary, but they are still there, and I won’t stand for this!” They’re not Quonset huts, but…they are corrugated metal, so they are squared-off Quonset huts. But they were very elegant inside, and they are not only still here, but they are highly sought-after spaces. There are people on this [Rice] campus that would kill to have one of those buildings now.

Rice University had…for years James Chillman, who as you know was Director of the Museum of Fine Arts, and a part-time teacher at Rice. He had been here since 1916. He taught history of architecture and other history courses and from time to time Rice had had someone else doing a little academic work in history of art and architecture. But there wasn’t an art department until 1965. Katherine Brown was hired in 1963 at Rice to do some art history courses, and she knew so much more about art history and history of architecture and so forth, that the School of Architecture said, “Hey, keep her!”

The de Menils left St. Thomas a small collection of books and other things, too, but St. Thomas developed a stronger art department in terms of studio art. And Earl Staley had been let go at Rice previously, and he was hired as the Chair at the University of St. Thomas, and built a very lively little department there with Jack Boynton and a classicist who dealt with classical Greek and Roman art—and I believe she is still there.

Academic art in the seventies

The 70s became richer early on, right away. Certainly at Rice, where things changed radically in terms of the arts with the de Menils’ shift—because finally there really was an art department, and since there were five art historians and five artists, it immediately became sort of a balanced department. But it was a complex department, too, which nobody recognized—because in addition to the department per se, the media center, being physically separate, tended to become an entity of its own. Both Winningham and Blue were empire builders out there, so the Media Center was part of the art department technically, but practically it was out there—and they had lots of money and lots of ambition, lots of energy and lots of talent. Then unbeknownst to most people, drama was part of the department.

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
nanocopper obvius
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Got questions? Join the online conversation and get instant answers!
Jobilize.com Reply

Get the best Algebra and trigonometry course in your pocket!

Source:  OpenStax, Houston reflections: art in the city, 1950s, 60s and 70s. OpenStax CNX. May 06, 2008 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10526/1.2
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google Inc.

Notification Switch

Would you like to follow the 'Houston reflections: art in the city, 1950s, 60s and 70s' conversation and receive update notifications?