A competition has been launched to select 50 pieces of art which will celebrate one of Stoke-on-Trent’s most famous landmarks – its bottle ovens.

The competition is open to all and organisers are looking for 2D pieces for the project as part of this year’s Potteries Bottle Oven Day celebrations. The Bottle Oven Art Club 2020 competition is inspired by Grayson Perry’s successful television programme, Grayson’s Art Club on Channel 4, and online art club.

A panel of judges will select the artwork to appear in an online exhibition, as well as a physical display at Gladstone Pottery Museum when that can be safely arranged in a covid-secure setting, with dates to be confirmed.

The winners will be announced on Potteries Bottle Oven Day, August 29.

That date is very important in the history of Stoke-on-Trent and its industrial heritage, marking the anniversary of the last firing of a bottle oven in the city. The day was officially recognised in 2018 as part of Gladstone Pottery Museum’s Festival of Bottle Ovens, which was held to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the final firing. This year a variety of events are being organised in a collaboration between the Stoke-on-Trent Ceramic Heritage Action Zone, Gladstone Pottery Museum and its volunteers, and the Potteries Heritage Society.


Councillor Lorraine Beardmore, Stoke-on-Trent City Council cabinet member for culture, sport and leisure, said: “Creativity is at the heart of Stoke-on-Trent, so I can’t wait to see the amazing artwork that the public will submit for this fantastic competition. The bottle ovens across Stoke-on-Trent are incredibly inspiring. They make our skyline unique and serve as a reminder of our hugely important industrial heritage, as well as how creativity and culture is a key part in the city’s future. Our very own Gladstone Pottery Museum is one of the jewels in the city’s cultural crown and I’m delighted that we’re playing our part again to mark this important anniversary.”

Find more details about entering the Bottle Oven Art Club at https://bottleovenartclub.blogspot.com/ and the Bottle Oven Art Club Facebook, Instagram or Twitter sites. Pictures of bottle oven-themed art work can be shared on social media, by tagging in @bottleovenart and using the hashtags #bottleovenart and #PotBOD 

The deadline for entries to the Bottle Oven Art Club 2020 competition is August 8.


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