Portobello Kilns
Saturday, February 29, 2020
Sunday, March 8, 2020
Bridge Street, Portobello, Edinburgh EH15
Art Walk Projects

This residency from Nicky Bird focuses on a group of women who once worked as decorators for Buchan & Co Thistle potteries in the late 1960s to 1972. Mostly in their teens, the women painted thistles, among other motifs, in workshops near to the present day site of the kilns in Portobello. Each decorator would have her own mark that she would put at the bottom of any pottery she decorated.

‘The Decorators’ residency directly collaborated with a number of these women. By paying attention to voice, image, pattern on pottery including the marker on its base, the residency produced a series of events and site-specific related artwork that teased out the significance of stories of the decorators, and how in their own subtle way, they continue to leave a mark on the Portobello landscape.


Events Include:
Sat/Sun Feb 29th & March 1st, 7th, 8th 11am-3pm
Kiln open featuring the voices of three Decorators with accompanying outdoor visual artworks.
Bridge Street, Portobello, Edinburgh EH15

Sat Feb 29th 3.30-5pm
Celebrating ‘The Decorators’ Tea Party
Opportunity to share pots, stories & other memorabilia @The Wash House, Adelphi Grove, Edinburgh EH15.
Bring along any Buchan pots and you might meet its Decorator! Welcome Introduction from Margaret Munro, Portobello Heritage Trust.

Sun 1st 12noon & Sat 7th March 2pm
Kiln Artist Walks with Nicky Bird
Come & hear all about Nicky’s residency and ‘The Decorators’ project.


‘The Decorators’ project is part of the ‘LandMark Residencies’ programme being produced by Art Walk Projects and supported by Creative Scotland, The Robertson Trust & City of Edinburgh Council.