AU Press Releases

Art professor to be published in 'Design History' journal

Dr. Ezra Shales, assistant professor of art history and theory at Alfred University, will have an article published in the Journal of Design History this spring.

“Toying with Design Reform: Henry Cole and Instructive Play for Children” brings to light the Tesselated Pastime (1843) and Architectural Pastime (1845), two children’s toys which responded to changes in aesthetic ideals and ceramic flooring.

In his article, Shales investigates the relationship between printing and ceramic technologies. He documents the ways these toys express several important issues of the decade that came to a head in the Great Exhibition such as: aesthetic prescriptions, particularly the question of historical and representational ornament; the propriety and proper applications of new technologies; and the edifying mass commodity.

Shales earned his Ph.D. in decorative arts, design, and culture from Bard Graduate Center, Manhattan; a master of fine arts degree in painting from Hunter College, New York City; and a bachelor of arts degree in Latin and Greek from Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT.