TEN is a Zurich-based architecture research studio formed by the work and values of its members and collaborators. Initiated in 2015 by a network of individuals from leading international research institutions, TEN provides an independent platform shaped by emerging practices in design research, public collaboration and experimentation in the making and reception of architecture. Its statute and consensus based working methods aim to synthesis knowledge from specialized research departments, industry, civil society, local governments, community representatives and individuals. TEN aims to demonstrate the public value of high-level research, theoretical inquiry and design speculation in the development of co-operative projects across the broad spectrum of cultural production. With representation from the fields of architecture, design, architectural history, research and making, TEN provides a space for creative translation to offer contemporary form to social, material and economic challenges. Whether a construction project, a teaching unit or a written text, TEN approaches each engagement as a unique investigation into the potential of generating new knowledge through the transformation of historical narratives and reinterpreting the links between content, form, technique and reception through its laboratory for architecture. Its output includes buildings, material and construction prototypes, thematic research, pedagogical models, symposia, artificial intelligence, publications and exhibitions with a specific focus on the built environment, its transformation and accessibility to wider audience.
TEN’s projects combine experiments in theory with the art of making. TEN brings ideas into physical forms and public engagements to expose and critique the habitus of specialization that architecture and academia is trapped in today, and to question the relevance of architecture’s professionalization. TEN is built on values rather than dogmas, ever experimenting with new methods for engaging with people and groups we do not fully understand. TEN is nourished by the fact that this procedure does not merely point out a reality, but creates a shared experience of it and allows multiple interpretations and life cycles of its endeavors. Meaningful art, architecture and design, we argue, shares the distinctive mandates of both research and craft to offer form to inter-subjective reality.
Wittgenstein once said that words are deeds. TEN begs to differ.
Particularly in a time when words fail to meaningfully reflect consensus on the material world, and serve primarily to fortify self-fulfilling rhetoric. In response to this contemporary stalemate within architecture discourse, TEN returns to an investigation of how architecture is made, and how it is legible in the world. TEN investigates modes of architectural literacy, striving to understand the relationship between words, drawings and buildings as carriers of knowledge in the long history of architectural practice and pedagogy. These three mediums are dissected and reconstructed with experimental methods for writing, teaching and design practice in order to reveal the intersections and tensions that exist between them. Each project in TEN is developed through a story whether fiction or fact, a drawing conveying all information necessary to enable the act of building and thought and a physical prototype in multiple scales. Within these spaces of translation, we enact the potential for architecture; one to be accessible by all.