|Degree:||Master of Arts (MA)|
The Fashion MA programme asks for a disruptive critical approach, leading to new aesthetics and responses about the practice and industry of fashion.
Fashion is designed, created, articulated, manipulated and simulated in both physical and digital spaces. It aims for a state change, where you are open to new and emerging thinking and to unlearning. It is also at its best when guided by diversity, inclusivity and cultural awareness. We must perceive systems and structures, and express our fashion identities with an awareness of how our values are embedded in our outputs. This programme creates an environment where you can engage with these processes. This will include an exploration of themes such as gender, culture, race, justice, nature, time, space, data, science, materials and magic. Throughout you will have the opportunity to reflect on, discuss and strengthen your own authentic identity, and help others to do the same.
Please note all applications must be submitted by 12 noon on the given deadline.
The School of Design is based across Battersea and Kensington sites.
Students have access to the College’s workshops, with traditional facilities for woodworking, metalworking, plastics and resins, including bookable bench spaces. Computer-driven subtractive milling equipment is available, as well as additive rapid prototyping.
In the MA Fashion programme you will have the opportunity to choose one of three platforms: BIO, DIGITAL 360 or SYSTEMS. These are designed to give students an opportunity to work with tutors and peers to explore themes that responds to their emerging practice and develop new spaces, materials, identities and business models. There are points of intersection where students can engage with peers across platforms. There will also be an opportunity to participate in the School of Design’s interdisciplinary Grand Challenge, which enables all students to work collaboratively to develop projects that anticipate and respond to key societal concerns.
The programme is delivered across three terms and includes a combination of programme, School and College units.
New Perspectives: Talk Debate Draw, is an intense series of shared perspectives, that aims to strengthen (and yet ask you to debate), your own values and critical thinking about Fashion as identity. There will be a series of lectures that may cover, Gender, Culture, Race, Digital Values, Design Justice, and that question our relationships to Nature, Time, Space, Data, our Planet, Ourselves. It will then to open us up further to Neuroscience, Material Hierarchies, and Philosophy. Parallel to the lectures, there will be a series of workshops run by the Fashion technical team, working only with material from within the RCA studio and a series of intuitive workshops.
Platforms sets out distinct yet interrelated ways in which you might engage with a developing and changing fashion industry and will support you in investigating experimental approaches to your practice. This is a unit to provoke and challenge existing norms about the Fashion industry and given ideas about Identity through BIO, DIGITAL 360, and SYSTEMS.
BIO, DIGITAL 360, and SYSTEMS looks to unite values, sustainability, planet centred thinking, cultural identities and connected patterns and networks, as embodied experiences across potential different geographical and temporal scales.
In term 2 all School of Design students will participate in the Grand Challenge, School-wide unit. The aim of this unit is to connect and challenge all students in the School through the introduction of a ‘wicked’ design problem that requires a cross disciplinary approach to problem solving involving an external international scientific or industry partner (or both). This unit and lecture series has been hugely successful in connecting and disrupting disciplines, people, philosophies and approaches to design thinking whilst providing our student body with very unique networking opportunities.
Advanced Practise gives space to further articulate your unique perspective, system and aesthetic for Fashion, that may have emerged during your first term and the units completed so far. It will be a time to identify spaces in the landscape that require new responses, and consider how Fashion might change behaviours. This might include non-hierarchical thinking, trans & post humans, all gender identities, inclusivity with an intersectional breadth, debate about the position of non-human agency, taking an open view to economics that includes all and offers alternatives.
Across Terms 1 and 2, you will participate in AcrossRCA, the College-wide unit. See below for more details.
Independent Research Project (IRP) - The Independent Research Project (IRP) is an opportunity for each student to take responsibility for their practice by developing their own brief. Through the programme, you will have been encouraged to experiment with a range of disciplinary and interdisciplinary ideas and practices. Through focused self-study the IRP enables you to apply that learning to a unique project and body of work. While this should be informed by your studies it should not be seen as fully conclusive; it is an emerging work that is now apparent and unambiguously your own voice as a designer.
You will be mentored throughout the IRP to help you develop your voice and your project. There will also be opportunities to make connections with peers throughout the IRP. This includes a burst mode week called ‘Mirror Mirror’ where students can present work in progress and give and receive peer feedback. A ‘Final Engagement’, will ask professional experts to critique your choices through a series of talks, post a public-facing event.
To provide prospective students with opportunities to find out about the RCA experience and programmes we run a number of on-campus and online open days as well as events in various countries around the world. You can find out about upcoming events or watch replays of past open days on the RCA website.