Varley Memorial Awards 2021

Richard Doust

May 25th, 2021

Two awards of £2000 for Visual Communication Year One students.

Each year, during the Summer Term, the College shortlists five or six students in Visual Communication year one (Graphic Design, Illustration and Experimental Communication), who are invited to present a proposal/project to a judging panel from the Varley Memorial Awards and RCA staff. Two awards of £2000 each will be made to individual students (or up to four year one students working collaboratively).

This year the shortlisting will initially be selected from online submissions. The online deadline is Monday 14 June 2021. Judges will select a shortlist of students who will be invited to make a personal presentation of their expanded proposal/project to the judging panel online (zoom), date to be announced. The successful candidates will be asked to produce a report on how they used the Award on the outcome of their proposal/project by March 31st 2022. The report and any design examples of output must be submitted to the Varley Memorial Awards Archive which is held within the School of Communication. Winners will be added to the Varley Memorial Awards website. See recent winning proposals here and here.

The Award is intended to support you in realising a practice-based research project, that you would not otherwise be able to carry out without funding. Final selection will be made on the basis of the quality of both your proposal and your practice.

Your proposal should demonstrate:
• A connection between your practice and proposed project.
• Your ability to realise the proposed project.
• A commitment to practice as research.
• A commitment to understanding the context of your proposal and the relevance, importance and ambition of your proposed project.
• Anticipated impact of this opportunity on your future work and practice.

Proposal deadline
• Wednesday 14th June, 11.59pm (23.59).
• Upload to Moodle > MA Visual Communication Year 1 > Varley Memorial Awards 2021.

A PDF document, including:
• Your name.
• Title of your project.
• Your area of research and the questions it will explore(maximum 50 words).
• A description of your practice and how it relates to your proposal(maximum 100 words).
• Up to five relevant images to support your proposal (note, no moving image work).

Selection process:
• Shortlisting – between 15th and 24th June
• Interviews with those shortlisted – tba
• Award recipients announced – tba

Any specific questions about the submission, please contact

The Varley Memorial Awards are in memory of Colonel Varley, who was a member of the College Council during the 1960s. He founded and ran Colman, Prentis and Varley (CPV) – an internationally successful advertising agency that was greatly admired for its high quality and innovative use of graphics.

The start-up fund for the Awards was raised by the History of Advertising Trust in 1987 and is administered by the College as a Charitable Trust.

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