East Londoners to help artist Aaron Angell build capital’s first public gas-fired kiln

Ceramicist says project will give local young adults and artists new insights into ceramics practice


More than 20 young adults in east London will help build and operate the city’s first publicly accessible gas-fired kiln as part of a new project called Town Gas. The London-based ceramicist Aaron Angell, who will develop the scheme over the next two years, says that the move will “open up a whole new world of creative possibilities, both for young people in east London and existing artists in the area”.

The project is backed by the non-profit art agency Create, which develops creative projects across the East End. The organisation has awarded the Town Gas scheme its first Create Cities commission, which is sponsored by Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

"In a gas kiln, we starve the glaze reactions of oxygen and produce much more dynamic results; electric kiln firing is too clean and generic," Angell says.

He founded the Hackney-based ceramics studio Troy Town Art Pottery in 2013 “in response to dwindling ceramics access in London”, says a statement from Create, which adds that Town Gas will introduce “a new way of thinking about ceramics to young adults in east London”. The programme involves traineeships and workshops on ceramic practices for local residents.

"Town Gas is about expanding the activities of Troy Town to offer gas firing to the artists-in-residence. The new gas kiln will be facilitated by training local young people to run the facility, who themselves will hopefully start working with ceramics too," Angell says.