Arthur Wesley Dow (1857-1922) was a artist and author. He taught at the Pratt Institute (1895-1904), the Art Students' League
in New York (1897-1903), and Teachers College, Columbia University (1904- ). The collection consists of prints done by Arthur
Wesley Dow and work of students at UCLA.
The Arthur Wesley Dow Association was founded at UCLA in 1922 to promote the ideas and teachings of artist and educator Arthur
Wesley Dow (1857-1922). Dow, a native of Ipswich, Mass., studied painting at the Acade'mie Julien in Paris and Brittany. He
returned to the United States to paint and teach, establishing the Ipswich Summer School which offered classes in arts and
crafts. His exposure to a book of prints by the Japanese woodblock artist Hokusai profoundly influenced his ideas on art and
aesthetics. He rejected many of the traditions he had been taught and immersed himself in the study of world cultures. In
his textbook, Composition (1899) he outlined the principles of teaching art synthesized from his studies--namely line, "notan" and color. He described
"notan" as "... a Japanese word meaning 'dark,light' ... the quantity of light reflected, or the massing of tones of different
values". The ideas expressed in Composition influenced many generations of young artists and expanded the traditional views
of art education and expression. Many of Dow's students taught in colleges and universities throughout the country and a number
of them held positions of prominence in California. Upon his death in 1922, the Arthur Wesley Dow Association was formed at
UCLA "... to unite for more effective service, those who wish to preserve and advance the underlying philosophy of Mr. Dow's
teaching. We believe with Mr. Dow that 'The true purpose of art teaching is the education of the whole people for appreciation'."