From 1960 until 1983 Rueben Kadish was faculty at the Cooper Union, where he taught art history and sculpture. Ashford studied with Kadish throughout his enrollment at Cooper Union: from attending all his Foundation-year Art History lectures to two years of independent study with Kadish in sculpture prior to Ashford’s graduation. Kadish was a tremendous influence on those who studied with him, presenting an insistence on self-directed research, careful consideration of the historical narrative that formal alliteration produces, and a deep emotional commitment to the necessity of artistic autonomy. His teaching appeared to come from a commitment to anarchist ideals of independent and skeptical thinking; vivid experiences of the horrors of war and the sanctuaries of love; and the then very rare critique of teleological conceptions of human history.  For Kadish the artists was always, always outside of linear time, working instead in ahistorical, perhaps magical collaboration with humans no longer alive and energies outside of rational measurement. In his teaching Kadish often spoke to the durable connection between beauty and justice, something he stated was rarely understood but always available in the beholding of artworks.  and his belief in the universality of the connections