Assembly was a multi disciplinary design practice. Formed in south london, and later dispersed across the country.
Interested in the human and natural environments, the natural landscapes that form and exist, the societal terrain that is shaped and guided by our politics and cultural performances, the land and spaces we inhabit as communities and people, and the ones we activate together as a public.
The studio was made up of Ella perkins, Owen hodgkinson, Andrew thorpe, Ross bennett, and Hannah Fincham (left to right photo lineup) a group of artists, thinkers, illustrators, landscape architects, designers, cooks, and more.
We used our skillsets to engage and challenge, make and break, push and pull, ask and propose, design and adapt. Assembly is currently on dormant hiatus and this page acts as an archive.
Our projects centred around a wildlife garden as we slowly brought it back to life. Considering things like access, use, our relationship to the wider heart of Deptford and the community that surrounded the site.
2021 → Wetlab, Lancashire Canal system, UK. Commissioned and Produced by SuperSlowWay, Abandon Normal Devices, in Partnership with Wigan Council, and Canal & Rivers Trust. A collaboration with architecture practice Public Works. See project case study.
2021 → Woodhouse Community Garden, Sheffield UK. Garden manager and engagement officer. See project case study.
2020 → Social Pickle, Sheffield, UK. We founded and began pickling in Sheffield in 2020 marking our inception as a project by transforming Sheffield foraged and collected apples into a beautiful apple cider vinegar. The project continues to grow and we hope 2022 will see us engage much further. See project case study.
2019 → Costruiamo un sistema di compostaggio, Rovereto, Italy. We led a group-build of a compost toilet for a community garden and hosted fermentation workshops to marry up the thinking. Commissioned by Comun’Orto, and La Foresta collective.
2018 → Haiku Sandwiches, published by Housework Press, London UK. A publication that opened up how we create food using recipes, a poetry come sandwich book. Launch party in collaboration with Spanners (London), book fair and talk at the Tetley, Leeds.
2018 → Grass Movements, various locations, UK. A creative movement and exercise club. Hosted at School of the Damned’s Common Room, DIY space for London, Rodger’s Party (a festival in Sussex), various greenspaces across london.
2017 → Letters from Deptford, UK. Catalogued characters from the unique shops and businesses up and down deptford high street. All the letters were made into a bespoke font and used to share anonymous messages from deptford residents.
2017 → The Art of Being Civic, Tate Modern, London (with publicworks) Talk and workshops.
2017 → FLOKKR, Roskilde Festival, Denmark. Building a pop up classroom and running workshops at Europe's largest and longest festival, exploring the temporary commons that resulted in Festival Waste Rugs.
2016 → Serve & Return, London, UK. A free community table tennis club built from the scraps of olympic hoardings and funded by Vinspired. This sports social presented a place for any age or ability who loved the table top game to come and share some back and forth.
2016 → Tradeptford, London UK. A local platform created to host events and discussions exploring the theme of local identity, gentrification and role of the citizen in Deptford, funded by Arts Council England. See project case study.
2016 → Garden_lab, London UK. A 6 month long course of social "labs" - creative investigations that allowed visitors to the Old Tidemill Wildlife Garden to become citizen scientists, helping to document and discuss the various positive aspects and uses of the greenspace in question. We were thinking about value on a more personal level than the space was being subject to at that time. Each lab delved into a different layer of the space, from Reading the Soil, to Listening to the Roots, Evaluating the Shrubs, Exploring the Water, Meeting the Wildlife and Charting the Canopy.
2016 → LAO BBQs, London UK. A pop up outdoor participative restaurant exploring cooking and eating as a mutual event
2015 → Designing the Urban Commons, Lessons from the Field – London School of Economics. Invited to talk about our lessons from founding a community garden in the heart of south London, trying to apply the principles of commoning to a space that has boundaries and private ownership.
2015 → Commons in Progress, towards a democratic city, Loughborough Junction Farm, London UK.
2015 → OFFUCTS 2, New Perspectives, Balfron Tower London. Commission by British Arts Council. Taking the offucts of our previous event we bought a pillar drill and made 1000s of holes in everything we could, creating a homemade mechano type game. We took these components to the Balfron Tower to explore small scale architecture and imagine possibilities of space, interaction and mood that sits so heavily in these buildings.
2014 → Do.It.With.Others, Deptford X Festival. A programme of events and activities responding to the theme Movements. We organised and hosted; music performances, group workshops, a messy school of play, other artists' work including a Disco for one! And some walking tours of Deptford’s green spaces.
2014 → Summer residency with Milton Keynes Arts Centre as part of the coffee hall estate project. We worked with local artists helping facilitate works around the loss of a community hall in the estate. Reactivating the area with recipe swaps, table tennis build days, pottery and ceramics workshops for an exhibition, and a poster workshop to make visible the feelings of the residents.
2014 → OFFCUTS, Pick Me Up Festival, Somerset House London. A creative game tackling the issue of waste in the creative industries. We foraged, haggled and found waste streams of wood, metal, plastic and more from studios across the city.
2014 → Registration Summer School, London UK. Founding and organising of a free summer design school that hosted over 80 students and teachers into a week of collaborative learning, through workshops, talks, games and social events.
2013 → Function & Purpose printing Nature. Film festival events In collaboration with Ben Pritchard as part of NXDFFF. We whittled spoons with greenwood from the garden and made smoke prints with candles and fat.
2013 → Colony, Anarch Gallery, London UK. We hosted a day of talks and discussions on value, currency, and knowledge exchange.
2012 → New Cross and Deptford's Free Film Festival. Programme of films, and events contributing to local community festival.
2011 → Fun to make, fun to eat, Sandwich Stories at The Showroom Gallery, London UK.