Braddock Tiles is an artist-run ceramics workshop we're building in a formerly-abandoned church in North Braddock, Pennsylvania. 

Braddock Tiles Headquartersphoto by January Fredricks

Braddock Tiles is a project of the Heliotrope Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded by artist Caledonia Curry, also known as Swoon, to advance the values and vision of her community-based work.

Mission & History

Our mission is to provide economic opportunity and leadership development by hiring and training local young adults to hand-make beautiful ceramic tiles – including roofing tiles to help rebuild the church roof.

Braddock Tiles began as a creative answer to a vexing question: How to restore a neglected landmark building in a way that honored the history of a proud manufacturing town?

North Braddock was built on manufacturing. The town was home to Andrew Carnegie’s first steel mill and is just up the road from the country’s first Carnegie Library. Decades of deindustrialization have left the town a shadow of its former self.

After acquiring a 15,000 square foot abandoned church building, Caledonia Curry (Swoon) began collaborating with local ceramicists to design and produce colorful roofing tiles that would give the church a new roof inspired by the great cathedrals of Viennese architecture.  

In 2015, a successful Kickstarter campaign raised over $100,000 to build a ceramics workshop in the church basement. Currently, Braddock Tiles ceramicists are working off-site in the Braddock Carnegie Library until renovations are completed.

Braddock Tiles

 photo by January Fredricks

 

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