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Decolonising and the queer experience

February 27 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm


The RCA Students’ Union have organised a series of round table events throughout the year. These discussions explore socio-political ideas responding to issues that affect the institution. A network of speakers from the wider London community have been invited to discuss their experiences in order to help us examine crucial issues relevant to the RCA and beyond.

The second event to take place this year focuses on the Queer experience and its relationship to Decolonising with a particular focus on the Queer People of Colour (QPoC) community.

Are institutions fulfilling their duty of care to QPoC?

What do the acts of queering and decolonising mean to you and do you see any overlap?

What can we actively do to deconstruct modes of oppression within the institution?

What are your hopes for the future of QPoC students not only surviving but thriving in institutions?

This event will be chaired by MA Print student and Co-President of the RCA Q.U.E.E.R Society Marissa Malik with Ryan Lanji, Phyll-Opoku-Gyimah and Raju Rage.


Marissa Malik is a London based artist exploring mysticism and language formation through a multimedia artistic and spiritual practice. She is interested in the way communities of color maintain and evolve their relationships to ‘motherland(s)’ while living in the Global North. Her research interrogates the effects of language erasure (specifically the loss of mother tongues and ancestral tongues) on first generation people of colour living in hubs of colonial empire. In this, she seeks to rewrite colonial narratives, as well as platform people of marginalized identities through facilitating spaces of reflection, and reclaiming loss spiritualities. Malik’s work has appeared in a wide range of publications such as Gal-Dem, Consented, The Bristol Cable, and Skin Deep Magazine. Her contributions range from cover illustrations, to political writing. In October 2018, her piece “Titty Taboos and Self Love” was published in Issue 3 of Gal-Dem’s annual print issue entitled “Secrets”. Malik’s currently works as the resident astrologer for Kajal Magazine, and is completing her MA in Print at the Royal College of Art in London.

Ryan Lanji is a Fashion & Art Curator based in East London.
After conceiving and curating his exhibition ‘Nailphilia’ at the age of 23, which showcased nail art as a form of mixed media and contemporary sculpture, Ryan started developing a curatorial practice that fused together fine art, beauty and fashion. In what was only his second exhibition the following year, Ryan opened the 80 year retrospective of Revlon at the London Film Museum, highlighting the immersive and experiential techniques Ryan still displays in his exhibitions today. His curatorial direction on shows, PR events, collaborations and launches have led to global recognition in fashion and art alike, bringing together some of the biggest names across the industry, including Nick Knight, Gilbert & George, Vidal Sassoon and Mary Katrantzou. Most recently curating ‘Conservation Couture: The Animal Ball Collection’ at the V&A Museum, it featured over forty fashion houses including Chloe, Burberry, Jean-Paul Gaultier, and Thierry Mugler.

Phyll Opoku-Gyimah
Executive Director and Co-Founder of UK Black Pride
Phyll (she/her) is the nucleus of the award-winning celebration and protest that is UK Black Pride. Widely known as Lady Phyll – partly due to her decision to reject an MBE in the New Year’s Honours’ list to protest Britain’s role in formulating anti-LGBT penal codes across its empire – she is a senior official at the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) trade union as the Head of Equality & Learning, as well as a community builder and organiser; a Stonewall Trustee; Diva Magazine columnist, and public speaker focusing on ‘race, gender sexuality and class’ intersectionality. Phyll has been nominated for and won numerous accolades including the European Diversity Awards Campaigner of the Year in 2017, she is also in the top 10 on World Pride Power list. Phyll is also the co-editor and author of the ‘Sista’ Anthology, writing by and about same gender loving women of African Caribbean descent with a UK connection.

Raju Rage is an interdisciplinary artist who is proactive about using art, education and activism to forge creative survival.
Based in London and working beyond, they primarily use their non-conforming body as a vehicle of embodied knowledge; to bridge the gap between dis/connected bodies, theory and practice, text and the body and aesthetics and the political substance. They work in performance, sculpture, soundscapes and moving image, focusing on techniques of resistance and utilising everyday objects and everyday life experiences in communicating narratives around gender, race and culture. They investigate history, memory and trauma, with an emphasis on colonial legacy, its continuation and impact on the body and contemporary diasporan identity. They are an organiser and member of Collective Creativity arts collective. Raju Rage is a creative educator with an interest in radical pedagogy.


February 27
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm


Gorvy Lecture Theatre, Dyson Building, 1 Hester Road, SW11 4AN