Ini Archibong

Inimfon “Ini” Joshua Archibong (born 23 June 1983)[1] is an industrial designer, creative director, artist and musician who is active in product design, furniture design, environmental design, architecture, watch design, and fashion.[2][3] He has said about the relationship between art and design "[t]he idea that something has to be useless in order to be art is something I reject."[4]

Archibong's work reflects an interest in master-craftsmanship and its relationship to modern and ancient technology. It is inspired by the study of architecture, environmental and product design, as well as mathematics, philosophy and world religions.[5][6] His clients include brands such as Hermès,[7][8][9] Knoll,[10] de Sede, Bernhardt Design, Sé. and Logitech.[11] Archibong lives and works in Neuchâtel, Switzerland.[12]

Early life and education

The son of Nigerian parents who emigrated to the United States as academic scholars,[3] Archibong was born in Pasadena, California. He attended and graduated from the Polytechnic School,[13] then briefly attended the USC business school,[14] and subsequently enrolled at ArtCenter College of Design, from which he received a degree in Environmental Design.[15] He was both an Edwards Endowed Scholar and an Outreach Grant recipient.[16][17]

After graduation, he joined Tim Kobe's Eight Inc. in Singapore,[9] before continuing his studies at the École Cantonale d’Art de Lausanne (ECAL), where he earned a master's of advanced studies in Design for Luxury and Craftsmanship.[18]

He is the younger brother of Olympic athlete Koko Archibong.[19]


Vernus 3, on display in the Metropolitan Museum of Art exhibition, Before Yesterday We Could Fly

In addition to his artwork and design practice, Archibong has taught at several design institutions and is a visiting professor at his alma mater ECAL,[20] and has also taught at the International Institute for Management Development (IMD) in Lausanne and the National University of Singapore in Singapore.[21] He has also lectured and spoken internationally including at the College Art Association conference, USC School of Architecture,[22] and in Dubai[23] and Design Indaba in Cape Town.[24][25]

In 2019, along with business development collaborations with Benjamin de Haan, Archibong founded L.M.N.O. CREATIVE, a multi-disciplinary design collective. The collective includes fellow graduates from Pasadena's ArtCenter, Jori Brown and Maxwell Engelmann, as well as designer Ebony Lerandy, who studied under Archibong at ECAL.[12]

Awards and exhibitions

Archibong's work has been exhibited at the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) in London, Alyce de Roulet Williamson Gallery in Pasadena, Galerie Triode in Paris, the Museo Bagatti Valsecchi in Milan, Spazio Rossana Orlandi in Milan,[26] Design Indaba in Cape Town, the Dallas Museum of Art,[27] the High Museum in Atlanta, and the Design Museum in London.[28] In 2020, Archibong began working on the creation of sculptural pieces for a solo exhibition at the Friedman Benda Gallery in New York.[29]

He is the recipient of the ICFF Studio Award, Best of NeoCon Silver, International Woodworking Fair's Design Emphasis Award, ICFF's American Student Designer of the Year Award, and the 2019 Elle Deco American Design Award.[30][22] In 2019, he received Distinguished Alumni awards from both ArtCenter and Polytechnic in his hometown of Pasadena.[31][32]

His design for a Pavilion of the African Diaspora (PoAD) won the Best Design Medal at the London Design Biennale in June 2021 at Somerset House.[33][34]

In 2021 the Metropolitain Museum of Art (MET) in New York acquired three of his designs for its Afrofuturist Period Room.[35]

In 2022 the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) added his "Switch" table to its permanent collection.[36]


The New York Times published an essay by Archibong titled "Ini Archibong: What We Believe About Storytelling" in 2021.[37] The essay is part of a series called The Big Ideas: What Do We Believe,[38] which also includes essays by Agnes Callard, Garry Kasparov, T.M. Luhrmann, Harry Reid, and Carlo Rovelli, amongst others.

See also

  • Ini Archibong - Friedman Benda
  • Meet The Artists: Ini Archibong (Metropolitan Museum of Art)[39]
  • Pavilion of the African Diaspora | London Design Biennale
  • Ini Archibong: Making the Chair BBC World Service radio documentary


  • Speechless: different by design. Schleuning, Sarah (2019). Dallas Museum of Art, High Museum of Art. Shapco Printing, Dallas, Texas. ISBN 978-0-300-24703-9. OCLC 1139707385.[40]
  • The ECAL manual of style: how to best teach design today?. Jonathan Olivares, Alexis Georgacopoulos (2022). Phaidon Press, London. ISBN 978-1-83866-517-3. OCLC 1280602474.[41]
  • Before Yesterday We Could Fly: An Afrofuturist Period Room. Ian Alteveer, Hannah Beachler, Sarah E. Lawrence, (2022). Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. ISBN 978-1-58839-745-4[42]
  • Question everything: a Stone reader. Peter Catapano, Simon Critchley (2022). Liveright, New York. ISBN 978-1-324-09183-7. OCLC 1347117429.[43]


  1. ^ "Ini Archibong". IMDb. Retrieved 2021-03-29.
  2. ^ "Designer Ini Archibong Shares a Glimpse Into His World, in Photographs". The New York Times. 2019-03-21. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  3. ^ a b Swithinbank, Robin (2019-03-20). "A Hermès Watch for Any Gender". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  4. ^ Robertson, Emma. "INI ARCHIBONG: "I HAVE TO STAY SPIRITUALLY IN TUNE"". The Talks. Retrieved 2022-12-01.
  5. ^ "The Breakout Year of Ini Archibong". SURFACE. 2019-09-23. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  6. ^ "Ini Archibong | Connected". Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  7. ^ "An Equestrian Sensibility and a New Collaboration Underpin Hermès's Latest Watch, Galop d'Hermès". Artnet News. 2019-02-01. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  8. ^ "A Look at Hermès' Unique Approach to Watchmaking". Prestige Online - Hong Kong. 2021-01-06. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  9. ^ a b "Introducing Ini Archibong, Hermès' Latest Watchmaking Wunderkind". British Vogue. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  10. ^ "Form Language: A Conversation Between Ini Archibong and Norman Teague | k. talks Replay | Knoll". Retrieved 2022-09-28.
  11. ^ Leadership, Creativity and the Logitech Story, retrieved 2021-03-26
  12. ^ a b Wallis, Stephen (2021-02-05). "Designer Ini Archibong Reveals Inspiration Behind His Forthcoming London Biennale Installation". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  13. ^ "Poly Alumni Association nominates 2019 Distinguished Alumnus - Ini Archibong '01". Polytechnic School. 2019-07-23. Retrieved 2022-09-28.
  14. ^ "Ini Archibong: a multi-disciplinary master of design". Courier. 2022-10-19. Retrieved 2022-12-01.
  15. ^ "Ini Archibong". ArtCenter College of Design. Retrieved 2022-09-28.
  16. ^ "How Los Angeles Shaped Ini Archibong's Unique Design Vision". Azure Magazine. 2019-02-22. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  17. ^ "INI ARCHIBONG - Artist - Friedman Benda". Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  18. ^ "INTERVIEW: Designer Ini Archibong On Making "Three-Dimensional Poetry"". Pin-Up Magazine. Retrieved 2021-03-26.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  19. ^ Reddinger, Paige (2019-09-01). "Design Maven Ini Archibong on His Hermès Watch Collection, Vinyl Records and Favorite Cocktail". Robb Report. Retrieved 2022-10-22.
  20. ^ "ECAL - STUDIES - MASTER OF ADVANCED STUDIES - DESIGN FOR LUXURY AND CRAFTSMANSHIP - Presentation". Ecal. Retrieved 2021-03-26.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  21. ^ "Innovation Entrepreneurship for Design Students". INDESIGNLIVE SINGAPORE | Daily Connection to Architecture and Design. 2014-02-17. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  22. ^ a b "Ini Archibong | Dezeen Awards | Judges". Dezeen. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  23. ^ "Dubai Design Week | The Culture of Collaboration". Dubai Design Week. Retrieved 2021-03-26.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  24. ^ "Designer Ini Archibong on merging myth and reality to create The Secret Garden". Design Indaba. 25 March 2019.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  25. ^ "Creativity is contagious: 4 talks not to be missed at Design Indaba 2018". TimesLIVE. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  26. ^ "Ini Archibong". Rossana Orlandi. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  27. ^ "Ini Archibong updates Theoracle installation to comment on racial injustice". Dezeen. 2020-10-26. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  28. ^ "Connected". Design Museum. Retrieved 2021-03-26.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  29. ^ Bury, Martine. "Thirty-Six-Year-Old Ini Archibong's Designs Are History in the Making". CSQ.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  30. ^ "See the Winners of ELLE Decor's American Design Awards for 2019". ELLE Decor. 31 October 2019. Retrieved 2021-03-26.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  31. ^ "ArtCenter College of Design Honors Doug Aitken, Sterling Ruby, and Others with Alumni Awards". Artforum. Retrieved 2021-03-26.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  32. ^ "Ini Archibong '01 honored on campus as Distinguished Alumnus of the Year". Polytechnic School. 2019-11-30. Retrieved 2021-03-26.
  33. ^ "Ini Archibong unveils Pavilion of the African Diaspora". Wallpaper*. 2021-02-09. Retrieved 2021-03-26.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  34. ^ "The Pavilion of the African Diaspora (PoAD)". London Design Biennale. 6 August 2020. Retrieved 12 May 2021.
  35. ^ "Ini Archibong MET Museum Collection". Retrieved 2022-10-24.
  36. ^ "DA² 2022: Recent Decorative Arts and Design Acquisitions". Unframed. 2022-09-20. Retrieved 2022-10-24.
  37. ^ Archibong, Ini (2021-06-01). "Ini Archibong: What We Believe About Storytelling". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2022-09-15.
  38. ^ "The Big Ideas: What Do We Believe?". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2022-09-15.
  39. ^ Archibong, Ini (2022-01-26). "AFPR—Meet The Artists: Ini Archibong". Retrieved 2022-10-24.
  40. ^ Schleuning, Sarah (2019). Speechless : different by design. Andrea Gollin, Laurie Haycock Makela, Ina Archibong, Misha Kahn, Yuri Suzuki, Matt Checkowski, Eric Zeidler, Steven and William Ladd, Dallas Museum of Art, High Museum of Art, Shapco Printing. Dallas, Texas. ISBN 978-0-300-24703-9. OCLC 1139707385.
  41. ^ The ECAL manual of style : how to best teach design today?. Jonathan Olivares, Alexis Georgacopoulos. London. 2022. ISBN 978-1-83866-517-3. OCLC 1280602474.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)
  42. ^ Alteveer, Ian; Beachler, Hannah; Lawrence, Sarah; Commander, Michelle D. (2022-02-04). Before Yesterday We Could Fly: An Afrofuturist Period Room. Metropolitan Museum of Art. ISBN 978-1-58839-745-4.
  43. ^ Question everything : a Stone reader. Peter Catapano, Simon Critchley (1 ed.). New York. 2022. ISBN 978-1-324-09183-7. OCLC 1347117429.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)

External links

  • Design by INI (Official site)
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