Shoes Hair and Coffee
This essay appears in the book ARK: Words and Images from the Royal College of Art Magazine 1950-1978, an anthology of the magazine ARK published in 2014. During its fifty-four issue run, spanning nearly three decades, ARK was an influential presence in British cultural life. ARK attracted international attention for its often bold and fast-changing design as well as the extraordinary cast of writers and artists who contributed to its pages, including Raplh Rumney, Lucio Fontana, Alison and Peter Smithson, Toni del Renzio and Reyner Banham.
The book includes original material from the magazine. My essay Shoes Hair and Coffee is an introduction to Toni del Renzio's Shoes hair and coffee published in ARK 20, Autumn 1957. In his essay, Del Renzio issued an irreverent challenge to the architects of the day, while describing hairdressing salons as appealing zones of social and artistic progress. "Only a few words were constantly true: art could never be pure".