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RCA Alumni

The RCA has over 20,000 global alumni, recognised as leaders in their disciplines, making national and international headlines for shaping the world we live in. They are sought after and highly prominent in a wide range of industries, from the Apple design studio in Cupertino, California, to the automotive sector in Sweden and Germany, to fashion in India and Italy – as well as working for NGOs, start-ups, not-for-profits and government, or forming parts of collectives or interdisciplinary teams. The cultural and social benefits of their work was felt at the heart of the London 2012 Olympic Games, in the winning roster of artists in the Turner Prize, and in clinical settings, helping design out medical errors in hospitals.

The RCA’s reputation for producing creative leaders started with the world’s first industrial designer, Dr Christopher Dresser, and radical social reformer Sylvia Pankhurst in the nineteenth century; with landscape designer Gertrude Jekyll, illustrator Kate Greenaway, and architect of New Delhi, Sir Edwin Lutyens OM in the Edwardian era. The College is well known for its roll call of major figures on the international stage over the past century: Henry Moore OM, Dame Barbara Hepworth, Bridget Riley, David Hockney OM, Sir Peter Blake, Sir Ridley Scott, Dame Zandra Rhodes, Sir Frank Bowling, Rose Wylie RA OBE, Ian Dury, Sir James Dyson OM, Tracey Emin RA CBE, Chris Ofili CBE, Sir Anthony Finkelstein, Dame Magdalene Odundo, Erdem Moralioglu MBE, Philip Treacy OBE, Julian MacDonald OBE, Christopher Bailey CBE, Lubaina Himid CBE and Thomas Heatherwick RDI, CBE. This sustained roster of talent over three different centuries is unmatched by any art and design college in the world, and continues to grow.

In the first two decades of this century, the RCA has continued to produce rising stars such as Nick Foster, a Royal Designer for Industry and Head of Design at X (formerly Google X), Google’s ‘Moonshot’ factory; Max Missoni, Chief Designer at Polestar; Miklu Silvanto, Senior Vice President and Chief Designer at Bang & Olufsen; Bianca Saunders and Saul Nash, both founders of successful eponymous fashion houses; Hoor Al-Qasim, founder and director of the Sharjah Art Foundation art biennial and architecture triennial; sculptor Thomas J Price; Professor Deborah Landis, Director of the David C Copley Center for Costume Design at the University of California; photographer Coco Capitán; Oscar-winning animator Suzie Templeton; Dr Zoé Whitley, Director of the Chisenhale Gallery and Victor Wang, artistic director and chief curator of M WOODS Museum in Beijing; Booker Prize-winning author Douglas Stuart; and Turner Prize-winners Oscar Murillo, Helen Cammock and the Assemble collective. The Royal Designer for Industry is the highest accolade for designers in the UK, and only 200 can hold that title – at the moment, 41 are RCA alumni, including illustrator and author Marion Deuchars and graphic designer and filmmaker Marina Willer.

Alumni stories

Explore stories and interviews with our alumni, from recent graduates innovating in their fields to established luminaries such as David Hockney and Zandra Rhodes.

View all Alumni stories