How can we ensure that archival collections are still available as a learning resource for future students? Glasgow School of Art has come up with an idea: they're selling products inspired by the work of mid-20th century textile designers found in the School's archive.
Classic Textiles at GSA's Centre for Advanced Textiles have adapted the vibrantly-coloured abstract designs of three of their former students - Sylvia Chalmers, Dorothy Smith and Margaret Stewart - for contemporary use. Some of these have never previously been produced as textiles. They've also made the world's only licensed digital reprints of Lucienne Day's iconic 1950s-60s furnishing fabrics in commemoration of the centenary of her birth. Cushions, tea towels, canvases and fabric by the metre are all for sale in their shop.
It's left me wondering if there are any designs in our own archives that might be adapted in this way. The issue of copyright is a complex one, but it's one that might be worth investigating. Does anyone have any thoughts or comments on this?