RCA summer show returns to college galleries

The Royal College of Art’s annual graduate summer show will take place over four separate exhibitions from the end of May.

Unlike last year’s show, which was held jointly in a marquee in London’s Kensington Gardens, this year’s exhibition will display the work of 400 postgraduate students in the college galleries and at its Battersea campus.

Last year’s show, The Great Exhibition, made it on to Design Week’s Hot Fifty list, with organisers claiming that it attracted more than 70 000 visitors.

Despite lobbying by students to hold the show in a marquee once again, an RCA spokeswoman claims that, ‘we decided against this for monetary reasons – it was very expensive last year’. She adds that, ‘Last year was a one-off 150 anniversary exhibition, which is why we hired the marquee.’

This year, Show RCA will open with an exhibition of ceramics and glass pieces, goldsmithing, silversmithing, metalwork and jewellery as well as fine art painting, photography and printmaking. Items will be on sale for the public to buy.

The second part will feature a catwalk show and static exhibition of work by fashion students. This is the only element to charge an entry fee.

Design disciplines take centre stage during the third leg of the exhibition. Over the course of 11 days, and coinciding with the London Architecture Festival, the RCA will showcase work by a range of design students.

Work by postgraduates from courses including architecture, animation, communication art and design, vehicle design, industrial design engineering, product design, design interactions and history of design will be on display to the public, as will pieces by textile designers, fashion footwear and accessories designers.

This year’s summer show will tie up with a look at the work of sculpture students at the RCA’s sculpture department in Battersea. Some of the work will be for sale or commission.


• Fine art and craft, from 30 May to 8 June

• Fashion, 11 June

• Design and architecture, from 24 June to 5 July (closed 4 July)

• Sculpture, from 25 June to 5 July

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