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Student Showcase Archive

Show 2015 Modular Identity Evokes Building Blocks of the RCA

The Royal College of Art Show opens on 25 June until 5 July, with work by graduating students exhibited across the College’s two campuses in Battersea and Kensington, from all six Schools: Architecture, Communication, Design, Fine Art, Humanities and Material.

For the second year running, the Royal College of Art has worked with RCA alumni Giulia Garbin and Jack Llewellyn (MA Visual Communication, 2013) to develop the visual identity for the graduate show.

Inspired by the idea of foundations – a term that the wealth of knowledge and expertise at the College, the materials and tools provided for making, as well as the actual bricks and spaces of its buildings – alumni Giulia Garbin and Jack Llewellyn’s graphic identity for Show 2015 not only makes a simple, bold statement that allows the student work its place in the limelight but also provides a versatile and responsive system that can integrate with the exhibition spaces rather than dominate it.

The new design reworks the impactful and bold Knockout typeface from the College’s visual identity. ‘We’ve taken the DNA of a traditional, woodblock typeface and redrawn it wider and bolder than ever,’ says Llewellyn. ‘With these basic "prefab" modules, we can play with repetition, scale and cropping, so that the letters come alive in forms that range from sophisticated refinement to reverberating, shouty celebration.’

The letter forms are supremely adaptive to physical space, so that oversized vinyl lettering can cut playfully across glass window panes, skip over doorframes, and wrap boldly around corners, bringing galleries alive and creating key moments around the College’s buildings, while also providing an effective way-finding system.

The design is responsive to the variety of materials typical of Show RCA, whether crisp white walls, cool concrete or temporary MDF structures. Heat-shrunk vinyl letters will adhere to brickwork, allowing the textures beneath to shine through, literally drawing on the building blocks of the College.

Garbin and Llewellyn have re-evaluated the Show poster, resulting in a hand screen-printed poster in a limited edition of 50. ‘We wanted to use hand processes,’ explains Giulia Garbin, ‘to make them really special.’

Octavia Reeve, Senior Publishing Manager said, 'We work with recent graduates of the Visual Communication programme to showcase the talent, knowledge and expertise of our alumni.'

Show 2015 is open to the public 25 June – 5 July (closed 3 July), 12 noon – 6pm daily

Show Battersea: Howie Street, London SW11 4AS 

School of Architecture: Architecture, Interior Design
School of Fine Art: Painting, Photography, Printmaking; Sculpture
School of Material: Ceramics & Glass, Jewellery & Metal

Show Kensington: Kensington Gore, London SW7 2EU

School of Communication: Animation, Information Experience Design, Visual Communication
School of Design: Design Interactions, Design Products, RCA/Imperial College London – Global Innovation Design, RCA/Imperial College London – Innovation Design Engineering, Service Design, Vehicle Design
School of Humanities: Critical & Historical Studies, Critical Writing in Art & Design, Curating Contemporary Art, V&A/RCA – History of Design
School of Material: Textiles

For more information, including special events, visit Show 2015.

There is a regular shuttle bus for visitors between the two campuses.

The Show Fashion 2015 took place at 7.30pm on Wednesday 3 June, and can be viewed here. Browse the work of all 46 Menswear and Womenswear designers.