The main feature of architecture and design firm Assemble’s studio in Northcote, a suburb of Melbourne, Australia, is the ceiling, a geometric form comprising triangular, origami-inspired folds of timber battens that conceals pipes, ductwork and more.
“The existing ceiling was cluttered with pipes, ductwork, air-conditioning units, smoke detectors and fire alarms – a bit of an eyesore.” says Assemble. “We wanted to conceal this labyrinth of pipes and tubing while still allowing everything to function. The ceiling design grew out of a process of experimentation, folding different sculpted origami forms in paper. The eventual design was composed of five triangles mirrored and repeated eight times across the length of the ceiling.”
“Our aim was to create a low cost, flexible workspace that would be an inspiring workplace. As a company with design at its core, we felt it was important to use our studio as a kind of three-dimensional showcase for our design capabilities and sensibility.”
“As architect and builder, we negotiated the design and construction through an organic process in which the design and detailing of the fit-out were improved upon and adapted as the build progressed, making use of the expertise and craftsmanship of the Local Spaces tradesmen while incorporating as much ‘unskilled labour’ (the Assemble team) as possible.”
All the custom-built furniture in the studio is on castor wheels so it can easily be shifted and the space reconfigured for events and design workshops.
Designed by Assemble: Quino Holland, Giuseppe Demaio and Ben Keck.
Designed in collaboration with and built by Local Spaces: Wes Old, Mark Coules, Lachlan Chapman and Maxi Walker.
Fostering a culture of living closer together, Assemble also publishes Assemble Papers, an online publication for small footprint living, covering culture, art, design, urban planning, the environment and financial affairs.