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Future Continuous

Each year the Royal College of Art launches the world’s most talented artists, designers and innovators. The 2020 graduates have not only risen to the incredible challenge of the pandemic, but their work is a testament to their courage, creativity and resilience.

This virtual show is a landmark for the RCA and an extraordinary launchpad for them. I have selected just 20 works from across the schools of design, arts and humanities; painters, product and service designers, as well as printmakers and design engineers.

They are drawn from many backgrounds and disciplines and it is this that makes the RCA so unique, combining cultures defined not by geography alone but by discipline too; creating an environment to not only perceive the future, but to shape it.

And so the theme of this collection us one of the 12 tenses, the future continuous, because at the RCA the future begins here.

Dr Nick de Leon

Dr Nick de Lion

Dr Nick de Leon has had a diverse career that has spanned the disciplines of design, technology and business. In 2012 he created the Service Design department at the Royal College of Art which he led until 2019. The department is recognised as the leading post graduate and research programme in Service Design in Europe with over 150 experienced designers undertaking Master’s and PhD programmes. He now leads the knowledge exchange and executive programmes for the School of Design, building partnerships with industry, government and academia.

Between 2007 and 2012 he was the Director of Design London, a joint venture between RCA and Imperial College to pioneer new models of interdisciplinary innovation and created in response to the UK Treasury’s Cox Review –Creativity in Business. Prior to this he worked for over 30 years at IBM where he was Director of Business Development in Europe. During the his career he held the positions of Director of Marketing for IBM Europe, Middle East and Africa. He joined IBM on graduation from the RCA as an Industrial Designer and his work includes IBM’s first personal computer, the IBM PC, and he subsequently led IBM product development teams for hardware, software and services.

He has a BSc (Hons) in Mechanical Engineering from Imperial College, a Masters from the Royal College of Art and a PhD in Digital Infrastructure for Smart Cities from Imperial College Business School. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Art, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a Visiting Fellow of Imperial College Business School, a committee member of the Royal Commission for the Great Exhibition of 1851, and a member of the committee for the Misha Black Awards.

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