Welcome to our review of 2019
'As I look back over the past year it’s evident that our staff, students and alumni are the leaders in the field to whom we turn to for creative insights into the way we live and should live in the designed world.
I hope you enjoy this snapshot of the College’s year, and find much to provoke, fascinate and inspire in equal measure.'
Dr Paul Thompson, Vice-Chancellor of the RCA
- Work-in-progress Shows across the College offered visitors the chance to gain insights into the processes behind students’ work.
- The launch of GenerationRCA marked the start of an ambitious five-year campaign.
- The Pokémon Company awarded a significant grant to establish two full-fee scholarships for MA students.
- The first Winter Convocation took place at the Royal Geographic Society.
- Digital Direction and Intelligent Mobility graduate projects showcased the future of storytelling and mobility.
- The RCA was named the world’s leading art and design university for the fifth consecutive year in the QS World University Subject Rankings.
- InnovationRCA launched First50, a scale-up programme to connect start-ups with industry mentors.
- The RCA’s Grand Challenge in collaboration with CERN, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics, demonstrated how innovative and disruptive technologies can address the world’s most intractable challenges.
- The success of two RCA alumni were celebrated by Innovate UK Women in Innovation awards.
- From devices that allow users to take control of their data and privacy, to soft robotics that support meditative breathing for the visually impaired, Design Products students presented prototypes at Ventura Future as part of Milan Design Week.
- This year’s graduating Curating Contemporary Art students produced four distinct projects in collaboration with leading UK arts organisations.
- MRes RCA Design Pathway students showcased two prototypes for Future Human–Robot Collaboration in the Workplace at the Barbican.
- RCA staff and alumni were celebrated at the Venice Biennale, with alumni winning both the Golden Lion and Silver Lion awards.
- At the Cork Street Galleries in Mayfair, graduating Fashion students showcased their avant-garde visions through performance, promenades, presentations and installations.
- At the Great Exhibition Road Festival recent graduates Lewis Hornby and Cristina Carbajo showcased their innovative food-related designs at the V&A’s Museum of Food, while students, staff and alumni from across the College took part in talks and discussions.
- The Intelligent Mobility Design Centre hosted a research symposium with guest industry speakers including RCA alumnus and Head of Design for Tata Motors Pratap Bose.
- The six winners of the Helen Hamlyn Design Awards 2019 were announced.
- InnovationRCA Named Accelerator of the Year at the UKBAA Angel Investment Awards.
- A collaboration with British Airways explored the next 100 years of aviation.
- An exhibition at StudioRCA Designs for Real Life showcased some of the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design’s diverse and engaging projects.
- Peter Kennard, RCA Professor of Political Art, published a monograph Visual Dissent with Pluto Press, celebrating 50 years of his political photomontages.
- The RCA reached a major milestone in the construction of our new flagship campus in Battersea.
- An RCA Innovation Workshop in Kyoto, Japan, explored design thinking for an aging society.
- The College received £5 million Gift from the Garfield Weston Foundation.
- We celebrated the successes of our black alumnae for Black History Month.
- We welcomed new Heads of Programme Alexandria Smith (Painting) and Tracey Waller (Visual Communication) to the College.
- We supported the next generation of artists through bursaries and mentorship as part of Wandsworth Artists Open House.
- Dean of the School of Architecture, Dr Adrian Lahoud curated the first Sharjah Architecture Triennial.
- Students collaborated on interdisciplinary projects with their peers as part of AcrossRCA.
- The launch of a publication by Art on the Underground and Book Works, showcased Senior Tutor and Reader in Contemporary Art Nina Wakeford’s Art on the Underground commission which celebrates London communities past, present and future.
- The four 2019 Turner Prize finalists formed a collective to win the prize, including Contemporary Art Practice tutor Tai Shani, alumna and visiting tutor Helen Cammock (MA Photography, 2011), and alumnus Oscar Murillo (MA Painting, 2012).
- We celebrated the festive season with our neighbours and the local community, with carols and a tree near Battersea Bridge and the annual SU Christmas Fete in Kensington.
See behind the scenes at one of our Open Days and find out where the RCA can take you in 2020.