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Royal Academy of Arts Spring/Summer Events Programme 2020

THE Royal Academy of Arts has a programme of events lined up for Spring/Summer 2020.

RA Festival of Ideas – April 29 to May 3.

The RA Festival of Ideas will return in April, bringing together great minds in art, literature, film, theatre and dance for five days of electric discussion, debate and creative thinking in the Royal Academy’s Benjamin West Lecture Theatre.

Headline speakers including artist Rachel Whiteread, theatre and film director Nicholas Hytner, author Tracy Chevalier, artist and illustrator Gerald Scarfe, choreographer Wayne McGregor, artist and Royal Academician Tacita Dean, playwrights Abi Morgan, James Graham, and Roy Williams and film writer and director Amma Asante will discuss their creative practice and share ideas on current cultural, social and political themes.

Building on the RA’s heritage of rigorous debate, the festival will explore culture, creativity and critical thinking through a series of interviews, conversations and panel discussions, as well as an adult life drawing workshop and family workshops in the Royal Academy’s historic Life Room and the Clore Learning Centre. The full line up will be announced shortly.

Why Collect? Event series for Gauguin and the Impressionists: Masterpieces from the Ordrupgaard Collection

Taking Wilhem Hansen’s Ordrupgaard collection as a springboard, a series of events with current art collectors will offer insights into their collection and pose the question: Why Collect? It includes patron and collector Valeria Napoleone on the motivations behind her dedicated collection of art from women artists (May 13) and a film screening of Herb & Dorothy (June 5), a documentary following two unlikely collectors who over the course of 45 years amassed a major collection of art of over 4000 works. Full details of the series can be found online.

RA Lates – July 25.

For the third installment of RA Lates: Summer Pleasure Garden, the RA’s two-acre site will be transformed into a contemporary reinterpretation of an 18th Century pleasure garden. Visitors will be invited to explore whimsical architectural follies, secret underground parties, karaoke singalongs, theatrical life drawing and more. Tickets on sale from March 31.

Architecture Programme

As the RA grows into the dedicated spaces for architecture in Burlington Gardens and consolidates the successes of its international architecture awards, the public programme acts as a key means for inspiring the profession and deepening the public’s understanding of architecture.

The Royal Academy Architecture Awards Week, supported by the Dorfman Foundation, will take place between March 16 and March 19 and the winner of the Royal Academy Dorfman Award will be announced on March 17, with several events held throughout the week.

Cristina Iglesias, the winner of the 2020 Royal Academy Architecture Prize, will be in conversation with Norman Foster RA (March 17) to discuss her work and practice.

The 2019 Royal Academy Dorfman Award winner Boonserm Premthada (March 18) will explore the acoustic aesthetics of spaces through the Royal Academy and beyond.

The Empowering Future Generations (March 18) panel discussion will discuss how architects and architecture can unlock the potential of future generations and consider how young people can themselves provide valuable insight.

A free evening of lively activities for Forming Futures: Awards Week Closing Party (March 19) will include presentations by the four Royal Academy Dorfman Award finalists, alongside installations, films screenings and more.

Kjetil Trædal Thorsen, founding partner of Snohetta, will deliver a lecture (March 30) on their iconic cultural projects, including the new Munch Museum, set to open in Oslo later this year.

The Spring programme includes a series of events which will interrogate the intricacies of designing for special interest groups and how strategies employed to promote play (April 6), make ageing more comfortable (April 20) and improve health (May 11) can be more widely understood and implemented.

This year’s Annual Architecture Lecture will be delivered by Momoyo Kaijima, co-founder of Atelier Bow Wow (July 13). The lecture will give London audiences a rare opportunity to understand the practice’s unique approach to micro-architecture and the ways in which their thinking about small, high density spaces in Japan has become an ethos developed through numerous publications and decades of practice. The Architecture programme is supported by Rocco Forte Hotels.

Free events for Families, Schools, and Community Partners

In the Clore Learning Centre, free workshops for primary, secondary and SEND schools and FE colleges, together with monthly family drop-in sessions and holiday family workshops, as well as workshops for the RA’s many community partners, enable all age groups to be inspired by the RA and enjoy the practice of making art.

Free Tours of the RA

The RA’s wider programme of free talks and tours provides audiences with an in-depth insight into the RA, its Collection and buildings with free introductory tours to the RA, along with thematic cross-campus tours focusing on the RA Collection and twice weekly taster talks exploring individual works of art, objects or architectural elements.

RA Schools

Visitors can learn more about the RA Schools, Europe’s only free three-year post-graduate course, through in-gallery talks and discussions in the Weston Studio, led by the RA Schools’ students.

RA Academic Programmes

The Spring/Summer Programme of short courses continues to draw on the expertise of Academicians, RA staff and a network of scholars and practitioners, offering participants academic insight and new practical skills.

Using the RA’s Gauguin and the Impressionists: Masterpieces from the Ordrupgaard Collection exhibition as a starting point, there will be an opportunity to learn more about Impressionism and the art movements included in the exhibition with the lecture series, From Realism to Surrealism: a guide to modern art movements and weekend course, Making an Impression: the origins and afterlives of Impressionism.

There is a chance to try out new materials and techniques in a number of practical courses, including Life Drawing: Exploring Metalpoint and Drawing with threads: an introduction to weaving, whilst The Art of Jewellery eight-week lecture series provides an insight into the history of and theory behind the jewellery business.

For those looking for a comprehensive overview of the contemporary art world, the Contemporary Art Summer School, based on the Summer Exhibition 2020, will provide an immersive guide to London’s place in the global art scene.

To tie in with the RA’s Angelica Kauffman exhibition, the week-long intensive summer school Art and society in eighteenth-century Britain will explore the great European art movements that emerged during this period of political and social change.

Two practical courses on this theme, Myths and Legends: history painting from life and Drawing into colour: reimagining the classics, consider the works of the pioneering painter as a jumping-off point for experimenting with new techniques.

The RA is currently taking applications and holding interviews for its Executive Master in Cultural Leadership, with open evenings throughout the year. For January 2021 start, early decision application deadline is June 30 and general application deadline is October 30.

Exhibition programme

A series of talks and events will also accompany the Royal Academy’s 2020 exhibition programme: Picasso and Paper, Léon Spilliaert, Gauguin and the Impressionists: Masterpieces from the Ordrupgaard Collection, Summer Exhibition 2020, Angelica Kauffman, and Cézanne: The Rock and Quarry Paintings.