The present work demonstrates how the Euston Road tradition of realism was not only encouraged at Camberwell school of art, but survived well into the 1950s, after its leading exponents – William Coldstream, Lawrence Gowing, Victor Pasmore and Claude Rogers – had stopped teaching at the school.
Frank Collins was a student at Camberwell School of Art between 1954 and 1958. The view from the school has changed very little since he captured it in this highly mimetic painting of 1955. Though the tree on the corner of Bushey Hill Road has been cut
down and the traffic on Peckham Road has increased, the Victorian houses and the Art Nouveau school railings remain in place.
At the time that Collins painted the view, the house on the right, at 58 Peckham Road, was occupied by the Stelena Guest House. It advertised itself on the board above its front door and in the ‘Socialist Digest’, Fact, as catering ‘for coach parties, clubs etc.
All nations, large families bring the kiddies’.