For arts students who are graduating this year, coronavirus couldn’t have come at much of a worse time. Alongside grappling with uncertain career prospects, degree shows have mostly been scrapped this year, at least in their traditional form.
While the RCA hasn’t been immune from criticism for its decision to hold a virtual degree show instead of postponing its physical show to a later date, the team behind this year’s show has attempted to recreate the usual celebratory atmosphere with showcase site, RCA2020.
Envisioned as a ‘digital discovery platform’, the site features work by a cohort of 850 international graduates from across art, design, architecture and other disciplines, each of whom has been given their own page to showcase their projects.
To give the platform more of a sense of structure, a series of guest curators have chosen some of their favourite work based on specific themes, including artist and set designer Es Devlin, photographer Andreas Gursky, Vogue editor-in-chief Edward Enninful, fashion designer Anya Hindmarch and RCA’s chancellor Jony Ive.
The degree show also launched with an opening celebration spanning three international time zones, and is hosting a two-week programme of over 300 events to mark the occasion, featuring artist talks, performances, online tours, meet the maker sessions, panel discussions and workshops.
Banner image by Adalberto Lonardi. RCA2020 runs until July 31; rca.ac.uk