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Kettle’s Yard’s Community programme aims to establish a long-term creative partnership with our neighbours in north Cambridge, initially through a three year collaboration, Open House, supported by Paul Hamlyn Foundation and Cambridge City Council.
Open House is a long-term creative programme with Kettle’s Yard and communities in north Cambridge. Each year the community selects the Open House Artist in Residence.
For more information about Open House or to join our Open House mailing list, please contact the following staff via firstname.lastname@example.org
Karen Thomas, Community Officer
Liz Ballard, Open House Assistant Curator
YOU ARE HERE
The second Open House Artist-in-Residence, Isabella Martin, worked with local residents to explore the area and create a new map together in a project called You Are Here. Isabella worked with local groups to share stories and knowledge and develop creative skills to turn these stories into artworks. The artworks formed part of the alternative neighbourhood map. The map shows and celebrates what is unique about North Cambridge. Isabella and her team of artists have been out and about, running art activities and collecting stories and thoughts about the neighbourhood. You Are Here is inspired by Kettle’s Yard, celebrating all the individual and unique things which make a place special.
Follow the residencies here, through live updates on research, ideas, and activity.
Variations on a Weekend Theme
Emma Smith was the first Open House artist and worked across Arbury, King’s Hedges, East Chesterton and Orchard Park during 2015, collecting and sharing activities and pastimes local residents undertake to feel relaxed and restored at home.
Smith spent the first few months meeting local residents and researching Kettle’s Yard, which informed the creation of a new collaborative artwork, exploring restorative pastimes. Over the summer months she collected advice and activities from residents across North Cambridge and invited people to share their activities with others.
Smith was inspired by an unpublished manuscript written by Jim Ede, entitled Variations on a Weekend Theme. The manuscript details how Jim and his wife Helen welcomed servicemen from Gibraltar for weekends at their home in Tangiers where they could stay, try something new and recuperate. Smith distributed the collected advice at a public performance in the local community in November 2015.
The performance took place in a disused bakery on Akeman Street, which Smith transformed into an ‘art apothecary’. The advice was compiled by the artist into a book of restorative acts, which were prescribed and gifted to visitors. The installation featured selected artworks from the Kettle’s Yard collection alongside the hand made book and charts by Emma Smith.
On Your Doorstep
Curatorial Fellow, Hannah Kershaw, was inspired by the found objects in the Kettle’s Yard collection. She worked with communities in North Cambridge to make new creations based on found objects in the local area. These include jam made from locally foraged fruit, decoupaged artworks from international newspapers sourced locally, pebbles and shells collected from a local beach trip and much more. These were exhibited alongside objects from Kettle’s Yard at On Your Doorstep an exhibition at 37 Lawrence Way, discover more about the event below:
On Your Doorstep is supported by the Artisa Foundation.
Social documentary photographer, Katherine Green spent 2014 exploring the bonds of communities across north Cambridge. Her research uncovered a plethora of community-led initiatives stemming back to the first residents of the 1950s estates to the present day. She worked with the North Cambridge Girls Group, a group of young people and their youth workers, to explore how their experiences of living in the area today contrasts with living in the area in the past. Katherine captured powerful portraits which both document and celebrate some of the extraordinary residents and their community activity.
The project resulted in an exhibition at Kettle’s Yard and the installation of some portraits in large poster boards across north Cambridge. This has proved so popular that a touring version of the exhibition is now being developed and will be displayed in community settings across the city with the portraits from the posters framed and permanently displayed at Buchan Street Neighbourhood Centre. You can hear some of the interviews Katherine Green recorded with community members here.
Members of Cambridgeshire County Council-run youth club, Club United, who meet regularly at the Meadows Community Centre, have been working with artists from Kettle’s Yard exploring how their local community has changed and discover what makes it so special to them and their neighbours. Click here to watch a short film about the project.
Artists Hilary Cox and Rob Birch have been working with the group during the school holidays, developing their skills in photography. They were greatly inspired by the Arbury 1980 project and resulting book Arbury is where we live by the late Sallie Purkis, which saw school children interviewing, recording and documenting their community at that time. Club United members, with the support of Rob and Hilary, took photographs of places that were special to them, interviewed and photographed local residents and visitors to find out their thoughts about the area, and visited local museums to discover some of the history and archaeology of north Cambridge. This has culminated in the creation of Arbury is Where we Live…Now! a publication which reflects both the young people’s experiences of the project but also the experiences of people living, working and visiting north Cambridge today.