26 February 2021
Kettle’s Yard is a place of inspiration and innovation. Since re-opening in 2018 we have welcomed over 500,000 people to the House, exhibitions, concerts and learning activities. The majority of our programme is free of charge. We rely on charitable donations to make all of this happen, including generous legacies that are left to us.
In 2018 and 2019 we were extremely grateful to have received two legacies – the Alan Reynolds collection and the John Ady collection. Alan Reynolds and his wife Vona had a close relationship with Kettle’s Yard and the former Director, the late Michael Harrison, including a solo show of Reynolds’ work in the galleries in 2003. Reynolds was born in Newmarket in 1926. After serving in the Second World War, Reynolds joined Woolwich Polytechnic School of Art in 1948, before winning a scholarship in 1952 to the Royal College of Art. He established himself as a successful landscape painter, earning a reputation for his neo-romantic, dreamlike depictions of Suffolk fields and Kentish hop gardens, before turning to woodblock printing and cardboard reliefs in later years. The collection left by Reynolds included both original and signed prints including a facsimile by Georges Braque, and an etching by Sonia Delaunay.
This watercolour by Reynolds has been added to the Kettle’s Yard collection.
The John Ady collection was left to Kettle’s Yard following Ady’s death in 2019 and comprised of 26 works, including paintings and works on paper, bronzes and ceramics. Ady was born in Cambridge and educated at the Perse School. He met Kettle’s Yard creator Jim Ede in the late 1950s and the two enjoyed a lifelong friendship. Ady worked as a landscape architect and later as a painting teacher. He collected abstract modern art throughout his life and enjoyed many artistic friendships. He lived simply, surrounded by his collection, as Jim Ede had always done. Highlights of the collection included paintings by artist John Blackburn, as well as a picture by Paul Feiler, and one by Prunella Clough.
A legacy or bequest is one of the most significant and personal gifts you can make, and we are extremely grateful to have received these two legacies. Through a gift in your will, you can make a direct and lasting contribution to Kettle’s Yard.
Andrew Nairne, Director, says: “Kettle’s Yard relies on the generous support of donors. Legacies like these enable us to care for the Kettle’s Yard House and collection, make special exhibitions, commission artists and composers, engage with local communities and organise activities for children and young people.”
From these two gifts, a number of artworks were sold at Cheffins’ Art & Design Auction, for the benefit of Kettle’s Yard. The sale took place on 25 February 2021.
Before the sale, Brett Tryner, Director, Cheffins, said: “Kettle’s Yard will be selling some 36 artworks at the Cheffins Art & Design sale with the funds going towards continuing work producing exhibitions and events, caring for the collection and supporting artists. Kettle’s Yard represents one of the most important collections of modern and contemporary art in the country and we are delighted to have the opportunity to offer some of these incredibly significant items at auction.”