Thu, 8th Jul 2021 15:00

Modern & Post-War British Art Part II: The Studio of Alan Thornhill

  Lot 211

ALAN THORNHILL (1921-2020)

ALAN THORNHILL (1921-2020)
A.S. Neill
patinated terracotta
30 x 26 cm (11 3/4 x 10 1/4 in), high

Executed in 1971 when Neill sat for Thornhill at Summerhill School, Suffolk. Casts in bronze are in the collections of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh and the American College of Orgonomy, New York.

Alexander Sutherland Neill (1883-1973) was one of the most innovative educationalists of the last century. He put into practise his radical philosophy on teaching and learning at Summerhill, the school that he established in 1924 in Lyme Regis, which shortly thereafter moved to Leiston, Suffolk. Neill wrote widely on education, publishing Summerhill in 1960 to explain the methodology of the school based on his belief that children were inately good, that teaching should be led by student interest and that student happiness was paramount. Self-governance was a central tenet to Summerhill, in which every member of the school community - pupils and staff - had an equal vote to agree school rules and settle school disputes. Following the publication of Summerhill, his ideas received widespread interest and gained considerable credence among the counter-culture of the free school movement both in the UK and abroad in the 1960s and 70s.

Neill was one of several influential educationalists that Thornhill sculpted, another was Dennis Silk, former England cricketer and Headmaster of Radley College.

For further details on the artist, please check:

Sold for £325

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