From mid-March 2021 Southwark Cathedral are delighted to host Covid Clay Club by local ceramic artist Alison Cooke

Whilst London was in lockdown Alison Cooke ran the Covid Clay Club (CCC) to encourage neighbours and locals to be creative at home. Every Friday she hung a bucket of individually wrapped lumps of London clay on a community garden fence in SE1, where she lives, with the following instructions for passers-by to

1. Pick up clay and go home.

2. Make something.

3. Return it and it will be fired.

4. Repeat 1 to 3. Its FREE!!

The Covid Clay Club ran for 16 weeks. Approximately 60 people took part during Lockdown I and II and 200kg of London clay was used to make more than 150 ceramic pieces. 

Some people came just once, others returned every week, some on their own, some with kids. Many stopped for a chat over the garden fence to talk about what they were going to make and how they were coping in their version of the lockdown. 

The clay used for Covid Clay Club Club was excavated from 25m below the Thames foreshore in the construction of London’s supersewer and was surplus to a previous ceramic project.

Alison Cooke is a London based ceramicist. She works with clay dug from interventions such as mining, engineering or scientific research. Her work revolves around the layers of history below a location, with a particular focus on hidden or underground networks where histories might relate to, and impact on our lives today and in the future.

Alison’s work is self-initiated, project based and often includes public engagement and involvement of other artists. She is co-founder of ceramics collective the Associated Clay Workers Union (ACWU).

For further information about Alison and her work visit her website here or find Alison on Instagram and Twitter

Covid Clay Club will be on display in Lancelot's Link from 28 March - 29 June.

There is no need to book in advance and please remember that face coverings are mandatory unless exempt.