Federation Member
Ben Hughes

Ben trained as an Industrial Designer in the UK and started his career working for

consultancies in London, Taipei, and Melbourne. During his career he has consulted

for companies as diverse as Tesco, Virgin, HMV, Microsoft, Nokia, BenQ, Acer,

Herman Miller, Porter International, MTV, Unilever, GSK, Costa Coffee, Orange, LG

and Samsung. From 1999 to 2011 he was Course Director of MA Industrial Design at

Central Saint Martins. During this time his students worked with many industrial

partners, exhibited work internationally and won major design awards including RSA,

D+AD, Red Dot, IF. In 2013 the course was awarded the coveted Queens Award for

Industry. In 2011 he relocated to Beijing, where he was appointed Professor and

Academic Director in the Industrial Design department of the Central Academy of

Fine Arts. In 2013, he set up A4 studios – a multidisciplinary design studio that

provides product design, visual identity, packaging, strategy, research and other

creative services to clients such as Porter International, Shanghai Media Group,

UCCA, Beijing Design Week.

Ben has exhibited design work and interactive exhibits at design fairs around the

world including Milan (2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010), London (2003, 2004,

2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010), ICFF New York (2007), Beijing Design Week

(2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015). Since founding Claystation (an organisation for

promoting creative practice in the context of design exhibitions) in 2003, he has

helped to create over 20 interactive exhibitions in 5 countries with partners as diverse

as Blueprint, CABE, Designersblock, The Lighthouse, London Architecture Biennale,

Grand Designs Live, National Museums of Scotland, Nickelodeon. In 2014 and 2015,

Ben curated large-scale exhibition areas within Beijing Design Week, each featuring

over 30 separate exhibits including interactive activities at CaoChangDi and Indigo

Mall respectively. In 2016, Ben was invited to guest curate a 1000sqm section of

Shanghai Art Design exhibition, hosted in Art West Bund.

Ben is the author of over 100 papers, articles and chapters linked to design for

publications such as Phaidon Design Classics, Blueprint, Modern Weekly, Wallpaper,

Cent, New Design, FT, AD and Patek Philippe.