This part-museum, part-gallery is a remarkable space – whitewashed walls, exposed brick, timber, layer upon layers of rugs – and uses unexpected ways to display art from different vantage points for the viewer to enjoy.
Kettle’s Yard is set in the residential building of Jim and Helen Ede. Jim met Helen at art college before working for the Tate in the 20s and 30s. He was ahead of his time and had a fondness for modern abstract art – counting Ben Nicholson and many other renowned artists as friends. In 1956, Jim and Helen moved to Cambridge where they began working on restoring four derelict workers’ cottages to create a home before moving in two years later and living there until 1973.
Objects that would ordinarily be considered junk – like an old broom head found on the side of the road with its bristles sawn off – take on a new form in this considered context. By mixing these objects amongst a Miró or Moore, you’re never quite sure what is art and what’s not, which is the beauty of it.
Jim loaned Cambridge University students artwork during the term so they could appreciate it, too – his philosophy was that art should be a part of everyday life and shown in a relaxed way. We couldn’t agree more.