Opening Hours

House, galleries, café and shop: Wednesday – Sunday 11am – 5pm

Free, timed entry tickets to the House and galleries are available here.

Last entry to the House is at 4.20pm

Access Information & Contact Us

Find access information here. 

+44 (0)1223 748 100
mail@kettlesyard.cam.ac.uk

 

Kettle’s Yard News

Be the first to hear our latest news by signing up to our mailing list.

For our latest blogs click here

Find out What’s On at Kettle’s Yard here.

 

Our work of the week is ‘1924 (Bertha No.2)’ by Ben Nicholson. This piece can be found downstairs in the extension at Kettle’s Yard. The title of the painting, inscribed by Nicholson on the back, suggests that it is a portrait rather than a generalised head. The sitter, however, has not been identified. Nicholson’s handling of the paint is here simple and swift. An off-white ground, still visible in places, forms the base for the urgent preliminary drawing. In both scale and execution, the artist seems to be making deliberate references to Renaissance frescoes. The head is larger than life and the bare shoulders would establish a massive body if projected beyond the canvas. Even the isolation of this detail recalls the way in which fragments of fresco were removed and framed. This is consistent with the growing appreciation amongst London art circles for the so-called Italian ‘primitives’. In this work their simple style and palette came to be combined with a solidity and faceting of the figure derived from Cubism.