Reflections on Brexit: Ab Rogers


17 June 2016

On 23 June, British citizens will vote for the UK to either leave or remain part of the European Union. Should the UK vote to leave the EU, the design industry is likely to change significantly.

For the 11th issue of Disegno: The Quarterly Journal of Design, Disegno hosted a roundtable inviting figures from across the design spectrum to consider the creative value of the EU and the impact of the UK’s membership referendum on the design industries. The resulting discussion will be published in Disegno #11 (on sale in mid-June) and on DisegnoDaily.com, in late-June.

In the days leading up to the EU referendum, Disegno will be publishing reflections from a selection of the designers featured in the roundtable. Participants include Julia Lohmann, Ab Rogers, Sarah van Gameren, Kathrin Böhm, Jana Scholze, Oscar Diaz and Tetsuo Mukai.

Today, Disegno is delighted to publish a reflection from designer and architect Ab Rogers.

Ab Rogers

Ab Rogers is an architect and founder of London-based design practice Ab Rogers Design. Rogers is also a visiting professor at the Royal College of Art. He is British and lives in the UK.

That sense of being an international citizen is the reason why London is interesting. The creative industry in the UK is incredibly successful and actually the equal of the financial sector. But that success is down to the breadth of places that we can pull from – both in terms of design intellect and also finding people from different contexts with different ideas. People come together, things change, and progress happens in a complex and interesting way. And society grows out of those creative decisions. As soon as that situation stops and we go back into our little castles again, we’re going to move backwards. Europe can compete with the rest of the world, but Britain can’t. Alone, we’re a very small, isolated island. It seems crazy that we have these nationalistic paranoias that we all retreat to.