Lancashire artist creates stunning multisoundscape tapestry to mark The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee
– Exhibiting at Blackburn Cathedral until 2023
– Renowned local artist Jamie Holman created the piece of art
– Then embarks on a national and international tour
A new monumental artwork titled ‘The Lancashire Tapestry’ celebrating Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, will be unveiled on 1st June at a very special ceremony at Blackburn Cathedral.
Taking inspiration from the Lancashire industrialists and philanthropists of the past, Lancashire-based business leaders and cultural professionals have come together to create a legacy for the people of Lancashire which celebrates this extraordinary moment in the country’s civic history. And as is only fitting the commission is being woven in recycled cotton and wool in Burnley, Lancashire.
The Lord Lieutenant Lord Shuttleworth and appointed Deputy Lieutenants; Tony Attard OBE and Dennis Mendoros OBE were inspired by time spent at the Harris Museum in Preston, Lancashire viewing the journey of the county and all that has been achieved throughout history by its industrialists.
They wanted to create inspiration for a new piece to represent this work and the culture in Lancashire by stimulating creativity amongst local artists. Working together they created the opportunity and the funding for this visionary opportunity to celebrate our monarch; and the people she has devoted herself to.
Following an open call competition , Jamie Holman, aged 48, in Blackburn, a multi-disciplinary and production-oriented artist and graduate of the Chelsea College of Art, created a stunning tapestry which is 18 metres long x 1.6 metres.
Jamie Holman often fabricates or makes in collaboration with either industrial processes or skilled crafts makers and artists. His work is informed by the heritage of working-class communities, in particular the impact of the industrial revolution and the cultures that have manifested as a consequence of its emergence and subsequent reinvention.
He has worked collaboratively with local artists and the Lancashire community to create a piece of work that recognises the significant changes, both socially and economically, that have occurred throughout The Queen’s reign and the constant throughout this period that has been the service of the monarch; a monarch who has sat with every Prime Minister from Churchill to Johnson and has devoted her life to the nation.
To accompany the tapestry Jamie has recorded 70 people from Lancashire all of whom are aged 70 and have been alive as long as The Queen has been on the throne. The interviewees hail from many different backgrounds that make up the rich diverse Lancashire population, representing land, sea and rural settings, ranging from mill workers to fisherman to lifeboat rescuers.
As the county’s population profile has evolved Jamie has incorporated this and included the rich diversity of the area including interviewees from South Asia and Eastern European heritage. By recording their memories, he has produced a beautiful, poetic multi-channel soundscape installation that tells the story of The Queen’s reign, diverse Lancastrian communities and the extraordinary individuals who best remember her lifetime of service. He has threaded their personal stories together, creating a narrative that will accompany this significant tapestry that depicts the 70 years of the monarch’s service to her people.
The tapestry is housed in a horse-shoe frame, backed in local manufactured velvet, which visitors enter. They are then surrounded by eight immersive speakers which project the people’s voices around the structure, accompanied by a music strung score.
The piece of art took four months to produce from Jamie’s studio in Blackburn. Alongside his team they travelled around the county interviewing the 70 people featured in the soundscape which were recruited via local community groups, art groups and social media.
Lord Shuttleworth, who is part of the group that commissioned the artwork, said: “Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee is a unique historical occasion that allows us as her subjects an opportunity to express our thanks for 70 years of continuous service to the nation. We are delighted that not only has The Queen provided great constitutional stability but also defined our nation to the world. The commissioning of this great artwork will give the people of Lancashire a legacy to celebrate this major event.”
Jamie Holman added: “As an artist I’ve found myself interrogating history through the lens of personal narratives, whether that’s through my own personal ancestry, or a unique story of an individual who has stood against the odds. I find ways to tell that story or question the beliefs an era has left as a legacy. Often my work explores working class stories, so this is a totally new venture for me, but I’ll apply the same logic to this commission. I wanted to make this a capsule of more than our monarch’s 70 years – but for 70 years of her people. The collaborative approach that went into making the piece of art represents the closeness of the Lancashire community and the significant part it has played in The Queen’s 70-year reign.”
The Lancashire Community Foundation was the conduit through which the team raised the funds for the artwork via sponsorship and personal donations. All additional monies raised will be used to support young people in need in Lancashire.
The completed ‘Lancashire Tapestry’ and narrative will be on display in Blackburn Cathedral from 2 June until January 2023.
With thanks to the following:
- Dennis Mendoros OBE, DL
- Panaz Holdings, Attard Tony OBE DL
- Mark Mills
- Elaine Hurn and Tony Catterall, Taylors Solicitors
- Partington’s Holiday Centres Ltd
- SENECA Partners
Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council AND: Main Sponsor for the 1 June Official Launch Event at Blackburn Cathedral
- The Rt. Hon theLord Shuttleworth KG KCVO
- Pendle Borough Council
- Robert WebbDL JP
- East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce
- North & Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce
- Community Foundation for Lancashire
- Star Industrial Estate
- Mark & Joy Rawston
Contributions in Kind & Other Sponsorships:
- The Community Foundation for Lancashire agreed to manage the QPJ fundraising accounts (over £100,000) and will be managing the Lieutenancy’s funds across various QPJ Lancashire charities in support of Childrens’ Mental Health (estimated £30,000).
- Lancashire County Council sponsored the design, development and launching of Lancashire Lieutenancy’s website.
- Taylor Solicitors, Blackburn. Facilitated the drafting and negotiations of required legal documents in support of QPJ Art Commission.
- Marketing Lancashire. Is actively supporting the QPJ for Lancashire Art Commission and PR activities.
- KAYS Traffic Management Company is providing support for the 29th May 2022 Parade outside Blackburn Cathedral.
- Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council is supporting various QPJ promotional and PR activities across Blackburn.
- Dennis Mendoros OBE DL sponsored the design, launch and commissioning of Lancashire Lieutenancy’s Social Media and Fundraising Platforms
- Tony Attard OBE DL and Panaz Group sponsored the official launch of QPJ Art Commission
- Star Academiessponsored the provision of a parade stage.