"And ... the dazzle continued inside ...": New Zealand interior and landscape architectures of the 1930s
Keywords:Landscape Architecture, Interior Architecture, New Zealand, History, 20th Century
The Depression began in the late 1920s, but was not simply triggered by the October 1929 crash in Wall Street. In the two years between 1928-29 and 1930-31, "export income nearly halved. ... The government ... slashed expenditure," including severe cuts to public spending in health and education. As Ann Calhoun notes:
[t]he effect of the 1930s Depression on [Schools of Art] students and instructors alike was massive: salaries were reduced, the school admission age was raised, overscale salaries were limited, grants for sewing and science were withdrawn, administration grants were cut back, training colleges in Wellington and Dunedin closed and student allowances decreased, and grants to kindergartens were withdrawn.
A proposal for a town-planning course by John Mawson (the Director of Town Planning)) and Cyril Knight (Head of Architecture, Auckland University College) likewise failed due to "lack of numbers and Depression cutbacks." Helen Leach also notes the impact of cuts to education more generally, writing that: "[m]others of young children who expected them to start school at four or five learned in May 1932 that the age of entry would be raised to six."