Just in time for the half-term holidays, Blackpool’s’ Lightpool Festival offers a fantastic free Art Trail to truly engage not only children, but also everyone of all ages. This brilliant self-guided tour runs for 12 nights, from Tuesday 18th October to Saturday 29th October and sees outdoor spaces and iconic buildings transformed by spectacular light works.
Showcasing a spectacular array of international works from France and Netherlands and exclusively premiering new artworks never seen before in the UK, this year’s event promises to be the most visually spectacular light festival ever!
For the very first time, Lightpool’s Art Trail is now split into five zones. Here is the enchanting journey full of wonderful, enthralling discoveries.
Zone One: Tower Festival Headland
Start on the Tower Festival Headland, immersing yourself in a series of gripping Tower Projections and, at select intervals, The Blackpool Tower will be brought to life with a sound and light spectacular. You can grab a bite to eat or a hot drink from the wooden chalets on the Headland and experience Odyssey, the largest 3D installation ever seen in the Blackpool Illuminations display.
Zone Two: Victoria Street and Blackpool Grand Theatre
After experiencing the buzz on the Tower Festival Headland, stroll over to Zone Two on Victoria Street. View Aqualux, a creative lighting installation composed of 48 unfilled water containers, and watch it come to life; see over One Thousand Butterflies which have fluttered over to Blackpool Grand Theatre; and get dancing to the energetic community project, The Blackpool Way.
Zone Three: Winter Gardens: Winter Gardens Conference Exhibition Centre & the Olympia and Derham Lounge
The newly-opened Conference & Exhibition Centre within the Winter Gardens hosts a number of large-scale light installations for this year’s Lightpool Festival, including Flux and Crystallized, two impressive installations premiering in the UK for the first time.
The journey at the Winter Gardens doesn’t stop at the Winter Gardens Conference & Exhibition Centre. Head over to the Olympia to see a selection of old Illuminations favourites from years gone by, including the dazzling Tiffany Umbrellas and the otherworldly Spacemen; speak to Norman, an old-school ‘smart’ screen but with attitude; and watch the inspiring community project, We Are Blackpool.
Zone Four: St John’s Square | Birley Street
Step back outside and engross yourself in The Nature Takeover, a journey into the interconnected rhythms of the natural world as it consumes St John’s Church. Cleverly interact with the projection and control insects crawling on the building with your mobile device, Round the corner, discover six metal arches which dominate Birley Street with a light and sound show spectacular.
Zone Five: Bickerstaffe/Grundy Art Gallery
Last, but certainly not least, marvel at Big Bird, the 3.5-metre-high pigeon sculpture constructed from parts of London Black Cabs (Hackney Carriage) and tastefully illuminated by the Blackpool Illuminations team. During the daytime on selected days, Grundy joins with the Blackpool Illuminations and the town’s Lightpool Festival to celebrate Blackpool’s season of light. From Mark Leckey, a Turner Prize winning artist, to the prize’s namesake, JMW Turner, the programme explores how artists use illuminated and natural light in their work.