Royal College of Art and the AACDD presents RCA Black

By Holly Bynoe Friday, August 19th, 2011 Categories: Curatorial Projects, Exhibitions, Updates

The Royal College of Art in collaboration with the African and African Caribbean Design Diaspora (AACDD), is proud to present RCA Black, an exhibition celebrating art and design by African and African Caribbean graduates and students. The show will run from the 31st of August through the 6th of September. Admission is free and open to the public.

Caroline Sardine a.k.a boooops

The RCA is one of the world’s most influential postgraduate art and design colleges. As an incubator for creative talent it is renowned for its alumni who include Ridley Scott, James Dyson, Tracey Emin and David Hockney.  Alongside these, the RCA has also been instrumental in developing the careers of artists and designers from African and African Caribbean descent such as painter Chris Ofili and architect David Adjaye.

A Royal College of Art education undoubtedly brings with it the prospect of prestige and success, yet at the same time, the College – in common with other major British educational institutions – is seen as being a predominately white university.

With this in mind, RCA Black will for the very first time bring together the multidisciplinary practices of the College’s African and African Caribbean art and design alumni, past and present. The achievements of these artists and designers – spanning 60 years – are being showcased not only as exemplars of creativity but also as a point of celebration.

Believing that the art and design sector should be truly representative of all talent, the AACDD approached the RCA to present the work of a group of graduates who are often marginalised within the creative industries. RCA Black features 23 artists, designers and makers, including bespoke tailor Charlie Allen; photographer Eileen Perrier; painters Chris Ofili and Frank Bowling RA; contemporary artists Harold Offeh and Faisal Abdu’Allah; silversmith Ndidi Ekubia and designer Simone Brewster.

Dr Paul Thompson, Rector of the Royal College of Art said:
“African and African Caribbean artists and designers are faced with many barriers in their quest to obtaining academic qualifications; through this exhibition I hope that those considering applying to the College will have confidence that admission is based on merit and not on any other factor.”

Holly Bynoe
Holly Bynoe

Holly Bynoe is a curator, visual artist and writer based in the Caribbean. She is the Executive Director of ARC Magazine, and a graduate of Bard College International Center of Photography (2010) where she earned her M.F.A. in Advanced Photographic Studies. She currently holds the position of Chief Curator at the National Art Gallery of the Bahamas, and is co-director of the annual arts conference Tilting Axis and Caribbean Linked Residency Program.