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Hooray for Clay – £160,000 raised by FiredUp4 enables three new ceramic studios

14th November 2023 by OnSide

Leading artists and celebrities from the ceramics world have helped to raise £160,000 for the latest FiredUp4 campaign. This will enable three new ceramics studios in Manchester, Croydon and Blackburn with Darwen Youth Zones to give economically disadvantaged young people the chance to work with clay.

88 works were donated to FiredUp4’s ceramics auction which was held at Adam Partridge Auctioneers and Valuers’ Cheshire Saleroom in Macclesfield on Thursday, 19 October 2023. Works included Sir Grayson Perry, Edmund de Waal, Elizabeth Fritsch CBE, Florian Gadsby, Dame Zandra Rhodes, Kate Malone MBE and by Johnny Vegas who also attended the event. Online bidders came from far and wide including America, Switzerland, France and South Africa.

Youth Zone members also joined in the auction and Amelia McCallum from Manchester Youth Zone sang a fantastic solo to entertain the crowd.

FiredUp4 fundraising has provided Ceramic studios to five Youth Zones within the OnSide Network. With the first two installed in Chorley and Wigan in 2020 and three in Warrington, Barking & Dagenham and Barnet nearing completion.

Kate Malone who has been involved with FiredUp4 since 2019 said it had been an extraordinary pleasure to be involved with the latest auction and expressed her thanks to all involved:

“The ceramic community has demonstrated their support for our belief that clay can bring multiple benefits to the maker and users. We are now able to install three more studios in Youth Zones, making a total of eight and we have more in our sights. The new studios will affect many more young people’s lives in an extremely positive way. I look forward to their installation and developing the use of all the studios.

“The third auction with Adam Partridge was a milestone for FiredUp4 and I’m thrilled with the result. Ceramics have given me the most extraordinary life that fulfils me as a creative artist and my community in ways I could never have imagined. This opportunity is now available to hundreds more young people to combine hand and mind in a focus that heals and develops personal development and working together.”

Jamie Masraff, OnSide Chief Executive, said:

“FiredUp4’s fantastic efforts will help to provide hundreds of young people from across the OnSide Network with the chance to try ceramic art, something they might otherwise never get to experience, this could ignite new passions, improve wellbeing and nurture the ceramic artists of tomorrow.”