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Public

The Great Exhibition Road Festival 2019

29 June 2019 to 30 June 2019 | 11am – 5pm

Exhibition Road and cultural organisations in the area

The RCA is joining its neighbouring leading cultural venues to recreate the spirit of the Great Exhibition of 1851 for the 21st century. Over the weekend of 29–30 June, South Kensington’s Exhibition Road will host a celebration of curiosity and discovery, with a new, free festival of art, design, science and culture known as the Great Exhibition Road Festival. The RCA is contributing to the Festival’s programme of exciting talks and exhibitions to inspire all ages, including: 

  • Hundreds of groundbreaking new inventions and inspirational artwork at the RCA's annual Show, which opens to the public over the festival weekend. 
  • Saturday 29 & Sunday 30, 11am – 5pm
    Recent graduates will showcase their innovative health and food-related designs at the V&A’s Museum of Food located on Exhibition Road. They include Lewis Hornby’s (MA Innovation Design Engineering, 2018) hydrating treats for people with dementia known as ‘Jelly Drops’ and Cristina Carbajo’s (MA Global Innovation Design, 2018) ‘Yokomo’, a sweet snack using cricket powder to tackle women’s iron deficiency. See event listing here.
  • Saturday 29 & Sunday 30, 11am – 5pm
    An exhibition of community artwork inspired by local and global wildlife, produced from a series of workshops with families in North Kensington facilitated by the RCA and Natural History Museum. See event listing here
  • Saturday 29 June, 2–2.45
    Taking us to another world, Anna Talvi (MA Fashion Menswear, 2018) reveals her process of developing clothing created for life on another planet and zero gravity. See event listing here.
  • Saturday 29 June, 2–2.45
    Current students from across the School of Design will talk about their trip to the world's largest physics laboratory, CERN and how it inspired them to tackle critical problems through science and design in the Grand Challenge. See event listing here.
  • Saturday 29 June, 1.30–2.30pm
    Programme Leader for City Design, Dr Tarsha Finney will join other panellists from Imperial College and the V&A to discuss architectural design and civic engagement. See event listing here
  • Saturday 29 June, 12.45
    Head of Programme for Interior Design, Professor Graeme Brooker, will give a talk aimed at inspiring teenagers about future careers. See event listing here.

The Festival is a collaboration between the RCA, Imperial College London, the V&A, the Royal Albert Hall, the Natural History Museum, the Science Museum, the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 and many more. The event marks the bicentenary of the births of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, taking inspiration from their vision for the Great Exhibition of 1851, which showcased the latest innovations in British industry and culture, and was visited by six million people.


Festival activities will take place on and around Exhibition Road on Saturday 29 & Sunday 30 June, 11am – 5pm. There will also be a range of events on Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings; please see the festival programme for full details.

Events are free. To attend the festival, please make sure to register for free via the festival website. Registering is the only way to receive the latest Festival updates and exclusive opportunities to book onto popular talks and behind-the-scenes tours.