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RCA Exhibition: with fists, it kicks, it bites

with fists, it kicks it bites | August 18 – August 22, 2020

A collaboration between The Royal College of Art (RCA) and four Fitzrovia art spaces – TJ Boulting, Edel Assanti, Webber Gallery, and the historic Fitzrovia Chapel – with fists, it kicks, it bites presents work by artists graduating in 2020 from the RCA’s MA Photography course.

Following the COVID-19 pandemic, the RCA had to cancel its physical degree shows and move them online. Recognising how vital a physical degree show can be, the Fitzrovia galleries came together to stage a group exhibition across their spaces, as a way of offering students a platform to display their work in public. The galleries have previously worked with or represent RCA Photography alumni – in particular TJ Boulting with Dominic Hawgood and Edel Assanti with Noémie Goudal – leading to the decision to focus on this year’s MA Photography graduates.

The resulting exhibition showcases the calibre of artists graduating from the RCA, as well as the breadth and assertive experimentalism of contemporary photographic and video art.


You can explore virtual walkthroughs for each section of with fists, it kicks, it bites by clicking on the gallery profile links below.


Led by Professor Olivier Richon, the Photography programme at the RCA aims to provide a critical and educational environment in which students can develop as artists with photography at the core of their practice.

Our approach to photography relates to practices and theories of contemporary art, rather than to those of media and communication. We have a fluid approach to image making; whether still or moving, analogue or digital, the photographic image is for us a visual form that aims to be thoughtful as well as playful: an allegorical and thoroughly visual form.

The programme understands photography as a medium with no fixed identity. This disregard for a fixed essence is photography’s strength: no aesthetic purity but a multiplicity of rhetorical forms used for the creation of fact, fiction and fantasy.

Equally, the boundary between the still and the moving image is now fluid and porous, enabling new forms of image making to be created. We therefore also welcome applicants who work with film, video and installation.

An informed practice of photography acknowledges the heterogeneous traditions of fine art and visual culture. It also engages with practices of reading and writing about the image. Here, theory and practice inform each other and this dialogue characterises committed study at postgraduate level.