Technicians play a vital role in this. Many are highly skilled specialists in traditional craft such as glass, metalwork, jewellery, embroidery, screen printing, dying or letterpress printing. A vertically integrated approach means that faculty, technicians and students all work within the same experimental space, each contributing their own ideas and skills.
The College also provides specialist facilities across cutting-edge digital technologies such as rapid prototyping, CNC milling and laser-scanning.
Facilities include a woodwork, metal fabrication, engineering, plastics making and a resin and moulding studio. A spray booth is available for spray paint finishes and a number of bookable project and making spaces are also available. Digital making facilities support subtractive manufacturing in the form of laser cutting, CNC machining and plasma cutting. The equipment includes 3 and 4 axis bench top CNC and large-format CNC machines. Students are able to experience working with a variety of materials including plastic, wood, metal and synthetic media.
Ceramics & Glass
Facilities include areas for hot glass making, cold glass working, kiln forming, plaster model and mould making, plastic clay making, as well as clay and glaze development.
College Shop and Raw Materials Store
The stores sell a variety of graphics, art, fabric and haberdashery supplies, wood and acrylic, stationery and paper, as well as free hire of tools and ladders.
Facilities include access to a fabric stockroom and specialist software within the College computing suite, as well as a wide variety of specialist sewing machinery, for both apparel and footwear, as well as dummies and finishing presses.
Lens-based Media and Audio Resources
Facilities include a variety of photography, animation and moving-image studios that provide filming, lighting and sound spaces.
Jewellery & Metal
Processes available include anodising, CAD/CAM-milling, computer modelling and rapid prototyping, casting, electroforming, enamelling, forging, tool making, patination, plating, presswork, spark erosion and laser, MIG and TIG welding.
The RCA Library is an inspiring and invaluable resource to inform and enhance study, research, teaching and studio practice at the College.
Our collections include over 70,000 books on art and design and other complementary subjects reflecting the full range of activity at the RCA. We have current subscriptions to a variety of journals and magazines as well as a collection of older titles.
Online Resources include ebooks, ejournals, databases and image & video collections.
Our Special Collections & Archives include a photographic record of student work and the UK’s largest collection on the subject of colour – the Colour Reference Library. It also includes the RCA archive, which holds material relating to the history of the College, as well as other special collections and archives.
Library staff are available to help our users find resources, provide tips on searching, advise on referencing and more. We deliver workshops and drop in sessions to support students; working with departments across college to ensure that library resources meet their needs.
Explore our collections using RCA Library Search.
Further information on the Library can be found on Moodle (current staff and students only.)
Visitors are welcome to the Library and to the Special Collections & Archives. More information here.
Painting and Sculpture
Materials spaces are provided, as well as a stretcher service and well-equipped metal and woodwork spaces.
Provides various high-quality, large-format inkjet printing and vinyl cutting in colour, greyscale and black and white.
Free hire of lens-based media and AV equipment.
The SmartZones across the College include training rooms and open-access computer areas. The technical spaces here showcase a variety of software and digital processes including group and 1:1 sessions with technologists.
Facilities for textiles include a large-scale printmaking space, a dedicated dye lab, mixed media and sewing facilities and extensive knit and weave facilities that include computerised handlooms, an industrial jacquard power loom with APSO software and a dobby power loom. High-tech printing and knitting is also accessible with a state-of-the-art Shima digital knit facility.