Imaginary buildings and structures are on the cover of ICON’s autumn issue. We caught up with multidisciplinary artist Marco Oggian ahead of Design London, for a glimpse into his imagination
ICON: You were born in Venice, have studied in Switzerland and currently reside in Spain. What aspects of your international background and experience have shaped your design principles and philosophies?
Marco Oggian: Well, certainly respect for diversity and cultures around the world. Having been lucky enough to travel a lot and meet incredible people, I don’t have any kind of prejudice or criticism towards things I don’t know. I simply follow the flow in whatever experience I am having, and this is reflected in my projects.
ICON: When did you know you wanted to become a designer?
Marco Oggian: When I was 7 years old, I guess. I’ve always wanted to do what I am doing.
ICON: You’ve become recognised for your bold, colourful work and are able to illustrate with sarcasm and at times humour a wide range of topics. How would you define or describe your artistic style and what do you hope it communicates?
Marco Oggian: It’s basically a reflection of what I am. I’ve always been an ironic person and quite cynical at times about so many things that happen to me. I always try to have a laugh even if my messages almost always make people think. We can smile about things by taking them extremely seriously.
ICON: How do you continue challenging yourself and your work?
Marco Oggian: I don’t think I’m putting myself out there by trying to challenge myself. I simply try to do whatever project I am assigned with perfection. I’m a super perfectionist, I recognise that.
Read the digital version of ICON 209 here
ICON: How do you continue developing a passion for what you do?
Marco Oggian: It’s my job. It’s what I do for a living and most importantly, I’m good at it. I am practically obliged to have a passion for what I do, and I have to pass it on to my studio team. I don’t want to arrive at the studio depressed or not in the right mood. I always want there to be a beautiful, fun and focussed environment, regardless of the beauty of the project.
ICON: Can you tell us what inspired the design of ICON’s autumn cover?
Marco Oggian: I was inspired by the buildings that surround me and to think of new ones. I was inspired by architecture with strong geometric shapes and above all buildings that can be perfectly integrated into the landscape while respecting nature and the ecosystem.
ICON: Among the people you’ve worked with along the way who have you admired the most and why?
Marco Oggian: I can’t have just one! There have been so many. I was really lucky to work with great people. We can start with Nicola Schwartz, photographer and founder of the illustration agency Pocko.
Then, we continue with Stefano Giovannoni, historical Italian designer and the creator of countless famous pieces all over the world. We still work together on a large number of product design projects. These are just two names of people I greatly admire and have had the pleasure of working with.
ICON: What has been the most defining moment of your career so far?
Marco Oggian: One memorable moment was an exhibition at the Moulin Rouge in Paris in 2017, in which I presented a work made only of geometric shapes and 5 colours for the first time. Maybe it was the moment I started defining my distinctive style. However, every event, exhibition, project around the world is important to me, so that I can focus on the next goal.
ICON: Do you have a dream project?
Marco Oggian: No, I don’t to be honest. Every project is a dream one for me.
ICON: Where can we follow you?
Marco Oggian: On Instagram, like everyone else @marco_oggian
Watch Marco Oggian live on 23rd September from 15:00-16:00 at Magazine London
Photography courtesy of Marco Oggian