This trip was a bit of a pilgrimage for me, I had long been hoping to visit this place and it did not disappoint. Kettle's Yard is an art gallery and house set in a quiet corner overlooking St Peter's Church in Cambridge. The house is home to a collection of twentieth century British and European art which is displayed alongside glass, textiles, ceramics, natural objects and furniture. This was once the home of H.S (Jim) Ede and his wife, Helen. Jim Ede was the first modern art curator at the Tate during the 1920's.
Over 100 artists are represented in the collection, some of whom have inspired me over my design career including Joan Miro, Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore, Ben Nicholson and Constantin Brancusi. The contents of the house and their curation reflects Jim Ede's life and travels, his affinity with progressive artists of his time and his closeness with nature.
The house was home to the Edes for over fifteen years, during which time they welcomed visitors into their home every afternoon. Hosting concerts in their tiny living room, then in the 1970 extension designed by David Owers and Leslie Martin. With the belief that art is for everyone, Kettle's Yards activity is informed by Ede's belief in the power of art to make us look again.
This unique house has a calm atmosphere and it is a joy to spend time in each space, truly appreciating the mix of art, objects, materials and architecture in a domestic setting.
The space is preserved as the Edes left it in the care of The University of Cambridge in 1973 and still reflects Jim Ede's original vision. Today with the new galleries and an Education Wing, Kettles's Yard hosts a dynamic year round programme of exhibitions, events and activities.
Banner image: Conde Nast Traveller