Joe Gebbia


Joe Gebbia is a designtrepreneur who’s work is broad and eclectic, crossing over disciplines such as industrial design, print, and web-based experiences. The hybrid creative joins his creations together with an enthusiasm to regard things in ways that aren’t immediately obvious.

Born in 1981 in Atlanta, Joe’s lifelong fascination for art and design led him to the Rhode Island School of Design where he honed his conceptual skills, garnering degrees in product design and graphic design. His creative pursuits were complimented via business coursework at Brown University and MIT, preparing him for the launch of his first product, CritBuns. The uniquely shaped seat cushion combines a form, function, and language inspired during an uncomfortable art critique, or ‘crit’, while at RISD.

The curvaceous foam object led him to question the role of materials in design, and the idea of ‘intellectual ecology” – how to do good through design while still providing a platform for function and commentary. The manifestation of this concept takes the form of Ecolect – a database allowing other designers to discover and find inspiration in alternative materials.

In his collaboration with CITIZEN:Citizen, Joe’s work extends this thread, on a path that is concerned with ideas and their manifestation in objects. Joe’s first project with CITIZEN:Citizen, the “Untitled” series, can be seen as a variety of things – an intervention into the manufacturing process, environmental recontextualization of objects and a work of art. To the user, the books are uniquely one-of-a-kind, blank canvases to fill with their own values, creativity, and commentary on what constitutes art and design.