The Knights Park Special Collection holds art and design material ranging from historic to contemporary publications. Its primary focus is to support teaching, learning and research in Kingston School of Art (the new name from September 2017) but the collection is of relevance to other disciplines, for example literature, history and education.
Significant items in the Special Collection include examples of art deco and thirties interior design publications, 19th-century architectural pattern books and private press books as well as a fine collection of children's literature, important for its illustration. The current focus of collecting is on artists' books and paper engineering.
Denis Berry was the head of the School of Architecture at Kingston School of Art, and later Kingston Polytechnic, from 1966–88. During his time in post the architecture department grew both in size and reputation.
We hold archival material collected by Denis Berry and his wife Sandra Berry, who also worked in the department. The collection covers records relating to the management of the architecture course including course accreditation submissions, staff list and module guides. The collection also holds material on architecture related work by staff and students during this time, including town studies and exhibitions.
Barbara Freeman was a student at Kingston School of Art (then still part of Kingston Institute of Technology) in the 1920s. She went on to become a successful book illustrator.
This collection contains Barbara Freeman's sketchbooks from her time as a student. This includes work on anatomy, life drawing, nature, illustration and printing. There are also notes on a number of artistic practices and on the modules studied.