The work of a familiar face is due to be showcased at Appetite’s Newcastle Common space in Newcastle town centre during February.
Life, Clay and Everything is a retrospective exhibition by master potter Keith Brymer Jones taking place at Newcastle Common – an empty shop turned into a space for art and creativity – from Saturday 5 to Saturday 26 February. In his first exhibition of this kind, The Great Pottery Throw Down judge celebrates his life and work and fans of the potter can view the collection in the space, located at 23 High Street, Newcastle, for free on Tuesdays to Saturdays from 11am to 4pm throughout February.
Keith Brymer Jones said: "My pottery life includes a lot of throwing, fettling, and firing, and it's taken me all over the world. So I'm really excited to be coming back to Staffordshire to tell my story in the Potteries."
Appetite Director Gemma Thomas said: “What a start to 2022! With Newcastle Common we want to present interesting themes and artists with both local and national significance. Our team and lead artist, Dan Thompson, have worked hard to secure an exclusive exhibition from one of pottery’s favourite faces this February. There is palpable excitement to welcome Keith Brymer Jones’ collection of studio pottery and celebrate his extensive career at a time when The Great Pottery Throw Down is on our screens, and as his new book hits the shops and shelves. It’s a great opportunity for people to visit Newcastle Common, find out what the space is all about and enjoy some work by a wonderful artist. Everyone is welcome!”
Newcastle-under-Lyme BID manager Alex Taylor said: “Newcastle Common is a great initiative for the public to really explore the work of local artists and their history, and we’re delighted to welcome Keith Brymer Jones' exhibition, Life, Clay and Everything to the town centre as one of the first instalments of things to come in 2022 from the Common. The exhibition will give fans of Keith the opportunity to enjoy a showcase of his celebrated works, as well as welcoming new visitors into the space and town centre.”
Council Leader Simon Tagg said: “It’s excellent news that Appetite is adding to its varied and interesting Newcastle Common programme by shining the spotlight on a craft which has inextricable links with the local area going back hundreds of years.
“The Great Pottery Throw Down, which is filmed locally, is a hugely popular show so I’m sure that Keith’s exhibition is going to attract a lot of interest, from both residents and visitors from outside of the borough – just like our new Arthur Berry exhibition is doing at the partially reopened Brampton Museum. Arts, heritage and culture is certainly alive and well in Newcastle-under-Lyme.
“The Council is putting a great deal of focus into creating a vibrant town centre – thanks to more than £35 million from the Town Deals Fund and Future High Streets Fund – and wholeheartedly supports other creative efforts to adapt to long-term changes in how people use their high street.”
Keith has featured as a judge on The Great Pottery Throw Down, now filmed at Gladstone Pottery Museum in Longton, since the show first launched in 2015. In his career as a potter, Keith has created ceramics for huge brands such as Laura Ashley, Habitat and Monsoon. He is also Head of Design for MAKE International.
The exhibition coincides with the publication of Keith Brymer Jones’ autobiography, The Boy In A China Shop: Life, Clay and Everything which arrives on shelves on Thursday 3 February. The autobiography shares details of his life and career, with each chapter based around an object that has been significant in Keith’s life.
The Newcastle Common programme is focused on the changing Newcastle-under-Lyme town centre, transforming empty shops and the high street into places of art and creativity. The project is run by arts organisation Appetite, led by the New Vic Theatre and funded through National Lottery by Arts Council England. For more details, visit appetite.org.uk or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org / 01782 381373