Assemble are a collective practice that is amongst other things an architecture practice, workspace provider, contractor, developer, group of artists, ceramics workshop and friendship group.
Assemble was founded in 2010 in order to cooperatively design and build a single project, The Cineroleum, a temporary cinema in a petrol station in Clerkenwell. They incorporated a year later in 2011 in order to undertake their second project, Folly for a Flyover, a temporary cinema, theatre, café and arts space under the A12 in Hackney Wick. That year they also took on an empty sign-makers workshop on the fringe of the Olympic Park to transform it into what initially was a workspace and events space, and which would become their ongoing workspace project, Sugarhouse Studios.
Since they started Assemble have designed and built projects in a variety of contexts across the UK and internationally. These include: Blackhorse Workshop, an open-access workshop in Walthamstow established in 2014; Baltic Street Adventure Playground, a child-led adventure playground in East Glasgow; Goldsmiths Centre for Contemporary Art, a contemporary gallery for Goldsmiths, University of London; Yardhouse, an innovative and economic new-build workspace; and a collection of projects in Granby, Liverpool, including 10 Houses on Cairns Street, the refurbishment of a series of terraced houses, Granby Winter Garden, a shared garden-house in 2 knocked together terraced houses; and Granby Workshop, a ceramics workshop based in the area and employing local people. It was for these projects that Assemble were awarded the Turner Prize in 2015.
Assemble’s work has from the beginning been influenced by a rich interplay between the physical making of things and their design. It is our firm belief that by understanding through practice how things are made that we improve our sensitivity as designers. We also have a strong commitment to the importance of things being made well, and believe that through making our environment carefully we can communicate care and respect toward the people that inhabit it.
Assemble is currently working on a number of projects including designing, building and running a new textile-oriented workspace in Brixton; designing a new city farm in Barnet; working on a house in Fogo, Newfoundland; establishing a fashion school in New Orleans; and designing a new model of workspace and housing in South West London.
Assemble have and continue to teach and lecture across the UK and internationally. They are currently running units at architecture schools including the Cass, Architectural Association and Central Saint Martins.