There are only a few people at Apple who spark as much curiosity and mysticism as Jony Ive. In a new interview with The Wall Street Journal, the design mastermind behind all Apple products talks about his life at the Cupertino company and what’s next with its LoveFrom company. Here are the highlights.
At the beginning of the interview, Jony Ive calls himself “obsessive,” as a half-joke. He talks about his process of creating products to solve problems:
“This is where it gets exciting,” he says. “You have an idea—which is unproven and isn’t resolved, since a resolved idea is a product—and the only tangible thing about the idea are the problems. When someone says it’s not possible, and all you are being shown is why it’s not possible, you have to think and behave in a different way. [You have to say], from a place of courage, I believe it is possible.
When talking about Steve Jobs, Sir Jony Ives first believed the founder of Apple would fire him when he reassume the company back in 1997, as he would hire “a more renowned designer to replace him,” but the opposite happened:
Ive, then 30, assumed Jobs would hire a more renowned designer to replace him, but something unexpected happened at their first meeting. “I clicked with Steve in a way that I had never before done with someone and never have since,” says Ive. Soon the two were having near-daily lunches and Jobs was spending untold hours in the design studio, where he and Ive transformed ideas into tangible products, starting with the luminous turquoise iMac, launched in 1998.
From all these products to the biggest it has ever created – Apple Park – Ive decided to create LoveFrom with the same intention of “no dividing walls cut up the space.”
The company founded in 2019 currently has more than 30 employees. Ive says LoveFrom “is the only creative practice he knows of to have an on-staff scribe whose job is, in part, to help conjure into words the ideas that his team came up with.”
Jony Ive has worked with Airbnb, Ferrari, and even Apple after his departure. The designer says he’s always looking ahead:
“Success is the enemy of curiosity,” he says. And for Ive, curiosity has taken on an almost moral or religious quality. “I am terrified and disgusted when people are absolutely without curiosity,” he says. “It’s at the root of so much social dysfunction and conflict…. Part of why I get so furious when people dismiss creativity is that [when] it’s an activity practiced in its most noble and collaborative form, it means a bunch of people who come together in an empathic and selfless way. What I have come to realize is that the process of creating with large groups of people is really hard and is also unbelievably powerful.”