Sunday, October 03, 2010

Growing forward

One of my most treasured possessions is a coffee mug I found in the dysfunctional tea room here in the Department of Anomie. It bears an inspiring message - "GROWING FORWARD" - and, below it, "THE FACULTY OF ARTS." To which Faculty of Arts this mug refers is a mystery - clearly is was designed for internal use only. The mug also bears a logo, which looks like nothing on earth, certainly nothing growing. It might be an illustration of wattle and daub, or possibly some form of crochet. I do not think the mug comes from the Arts Faculty at the University of Auckland, which is the 51st best arts faculty in the world but which lacks an inspirational motto or an unidentifiable logo.

I find myself enamoured of the idea of an arts faculty which grows forward. I wish we had one. It might be like one of the various moving cities designed by Archigram, although they would give the design job to Jasmax. Like most things at the University of Auckland, it would be slightly disappointing. Still, if it grew forward it might at least overwhelm the Business School.

In other news, the Dean of Arts will be away from the University from Wed 29 September until Monday 4 October attending a Deans of Arts conference in Australia. In this contemporary corporate university environment, it should be no surprise to learn that Deans of Arts have conferences. I hope she gets a mug.


Rusty said...

Big In Japan - so was this pre- or post Alphaville?

Stephen Stratford said...

To my eternal shame, I stole a tea cup from the philosophy department of Auckland University. It bore the legend "Australian Armed Forces". I had it for 20 or more years but it has now gone. I try to be philosophical about the loss of the cup, and about the guilt of stealing it, but it's not good, is it. Not really. Not ever.