Summer's almost here, so it's time to go check out the fresh meat being served up by the country's design colleges. There are 984,623,888 Art & Design students graduating this year in the UK alone (probably), and it can be tough to find the best cuts. So here's our entirely biased selection of the shows we think you should check out for 2008.
Since you're unlikely to travel all over the UK checking out student work, they've decided to all get together for you in London. Free Range is a rolling selection of shows at The Old Truman Brewery, featuring work from colleges right across the country, and is on from 30 May to 21 July, with private views on Thursdays 6-10, main shows on Fridays to Mondays from 10-7. Check the site for the full calendar.
University of the Arts
Central Saint Martins always gives good show. First up we're going to be checking out the BA Graphics exhibition at the OXO Tower Bargehouse (Blackfriars tube), from Saturday 14 to Thursday 19 June, from 11-6. We're also going to scoot along to their big brothers and sisters on the MA Communication Design course, who are getting all posh and smart at the Mall Galleries from Friday 13 to Thursday 19 June, with various opening times. Once we're done with that lot, we'll be checking out their big smoke contemporaries from the London College of Communication, particularly the BA Graphic and Media Design kids. They're doing their stuff at the college in Elephant & Castle from Friday 20 to Friday 27 June, with the private view on Thursday 19.
Royal College of Art
Once we've seen what the new graduates can do, we're going to check out the post graduates at the RCA SHOW (Part 2) - that's the show that features various departments, including Animation, Architecture, Communication Art & Design, Design Products, Industrial Design. They're having a Preview weekend on 21 & 22 June (to coincide with London Architecture Festival), then the show re-opens from 24 June to 5 July (closed 4 July).
D&AD New Blood
If you haven't got time for all that, then why not just go straight for the high-achievers? The D&AD New Blood show features work from some of the best students in the country, particularly those who have won D&AD student awards. The show is at Brompton Hall, Earls Court; with a private view on Monday 23 June 6.30-10, and the exhibition is open on Tuesday 24 from 10-9.30, and Wednesday 25 from 10-4.