Celebrating Thirty Years at Balls Pond Studio

Kate Malone
Balls Pond Open Studios, 3 and 4 December, 11am-7pm
8B Culford Mews
N1 4DX

Thirty Years of Balls Pond Open Studio. Dec 2016

Thirty Years of Balls Pond Open Studio. Dec 2016

Kate Malone’s Open Studios this year celebrates 30 years of living and working at Balls Pond Studio. Built by Kate’s husband Graham Inglefield, housing one of the largest studio kilns in London, hundreds of pots have passed though these sculpted gates to their new homes around the world. It is a pleasure to reflect upon the value of this space, which has served Kate’s work and the ceramic community so well.

Kate and Graham at their 30 year celebration of Balls Pond Studio

Kate and Graham at their 30 year celebration of Balls Pond Studio

Large scale public projects for hospitals,parks and libraries, have also been produced here.

Hidden Art Open Studios 1994. Kate Malone in her studio

Hidden Art Open Studios 1994. Kate Malone in her studio

On the 3 and 4 Devember during the Open Studios in addition to work from Kate Malone, ceramics will be for sale by Richard Miller of Froyle tiles, porcelain by Anna Barlow and mirror jewels by Andrew Logan

Part of the proceeds will go to support Adopt A Potter for which Kate is a patron.

Searching for the Ideal Building

Balls Pond Open Studio before and after

Balls Pond Open Studio before and after

In 1986 having searched for many months on their bicycles and with no mobile phones  Kate and Graham finally found and purchased 157 Balls Pond Road.  It was an almost derelict Georgian terrace built in 1912, with a long corrugated iron covered yard to the rear backing onto Culford Mews. It had been used for a ladder hire company and North London Plant Hire, no one had lived in the house since 1925. The trade counter became the kitchen, and the ladder racking in the yard became the garden gazebo.

Over 15 years Graham restored the house and built Balls Pond Studios to the back of the house and Kate potted away and ran the studios. They had a dream to make a studio that would serve Kate in her ambition to pot as well as help other makers. Balls Pond Studio was thus born.

A Communal Studio

For many years it was a communal ceramics studio, run on a not for profit basis, with one of the largest kilns in London it housed 14 ceramists  ranging in age from 19 to 70, up to 7 different nationalities at any one time ,all squeezed in and sharing the equipment and space. With occasional artists in residence and a small gallery it was fully rewarding to see so many artists enjoying this small space.. just 4.4  meters wide and 20 meters long.

Participating in the Hidden Art Open Studios

Hidden Art Open Studios Map 1996

Hidden Art Open Studios Map 1996

Balls Pond Studio has for many years participated in the Hidden Art Open Studios since the first Hidden Art Open Studios in 1994. Over the period Balls Pond Studio has also included many other Hidden Art designers such as Nicolas Arroyave-Portela, Jola Spytkowska and Emma O’Dare.

Kate was also very active when Hackney Contemporaries was set up, designers and makers from Hackney.  When Hackney Contemporaries expanded it became Hidden Art. See Launch event of Hackney Contemporaries at the Geffrye Museum in 1993.

Sharing Spaces 

In 2001 Kate and Graham sold the terraced house … decided to convert the top floor of the studios into their home and use the ground floor as Kate’s studio. with the members of Balls Pond studios leaving to set up like studios in Kent, Dalston and Islington…  The example had been set and Kate likes to think the ethos of sharing spaces lived on.  At the time the studios were started there were not many like places in London.

Thank you Kate and Graham for your amazing support to the designer and maker community and to Hidden Art over the years.

Kate Malone in her studio 2011

Kate Malone in her studio 2011

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s