Opening Hours

Café, galleries and shop: Tuesday – Sunday 11am – 5pm

House: Tuesday – Sunday 12  – 5pm

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Last entry to the House is at 4.30pm

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+44 (0)1223 748 100


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Andrew Nairne, Director

‘I left Syria, but never my memories of it’

‘Over the last three years as a Syrian artist, I’ve been observing from a very painful distance the war machines and dictatorships of the 21st century eviscerating my homeland, its people, its society, its cities and villages, its past and present, its history and its memory.’ (Issam Kourbaj)

On Thursday 9th October at 7pm I will be talking with Issam Kourbaj at Kettle’s Yard. This is a special event – an opportunity to hear Kourbaj speak about his new installation in St.Peter’s Church, next to Kettle’s Yard. Come! Kourbaj will also show slides of earlier and related work followed by an open Q & A session and discussion.

Issam is a remarkable artist who has lived in Cambridge since 1989. But he still has family members in Syria. His work has always been concerned with memory and ideas of excavation. I want to ask him how much he feels his work has changed since the Syrian conflict began. Does he feel art can make a difference?

His installation in the small chapel like space of St.Peter’s seems both meditative and shocking. Is this his intention? The backs of old books ripped away from the body of pages lie across the flagstones. The ancient church font is brimming with water as if in expectation. A large painting seems to roughly spell out a message – about what and to whom?

Issam Kourbaj in conversation with Andrew Nairne, 7pm, 9th October. Special viewing of the installation 6-7pm.

Tickets are £8 (£6 for Friends of Kettle’s Yard) and all proceeds will go to Médecins Sans Frontières . Tickets available to book online or call 01223 748100.

Issam Kourbaj’s installation is in St.Peter’s Church until 26th October. Open 11.30am to 5pm every day except Monday. Thank you to the Churches Conservation Trust.