Published  24/06/2002
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Obituary: Raymond Durgnat

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Hard to imagine that Ray Durgnat is not still writing and talking. Since his books of film critique still abound, unlike many of the theorists of the l970s whom he so criticised. Films and Feeling (l967) was surely, and still remains, a classic text primer for students weary of dogma. Likewise, Luis Bunuel (l967), Jean Renoir (l975) and A mirror for England (l970), Ray’s free contradictory spirals, parentheses and direct challenge to orthodox dogma (of the Sight and Sound genre) were welcomed. After teaching at St Martin’s School of Art in the l960s there was a memorable article by Durgnat, an inspired yet speculative venture into the aesthetics of technological form and function, entitled ‘From Box Kite to Concorde’. (Studio International, October l972, Vol 184; Number 948: pp130–136.) This article achieved cult status in design and architecture.

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