World-Class Art Installations Illuminate Blackpool’s Lightpool Festival
A spectacular illuminated art trail has opened in Blackpool – with a magnificent House Of Cards taking centre stage.
The installation, situated on the seafront in the shadow of The Blackpool Tower, is one of more than a dozen works of illuminated art located in and around the promenade and town centre as part of the award-winning Lightpool Festival, which is running until October 30.
House Of Cards, comprising 128 light boxes in the form of playing cards, has been created through a collaboration of 35 internationally-acclaimed street and visual artists from all over the world.
Premiering in the UK for the first time, it is a multi-sensory, choreographed display that collapses and rebuilds before your eyes. The stunning installation has already wowed audiences in Amsterdam, Berlin, Bucharest and Milan.
It is part of an extensive art trail, which is free to access and staged across a range of indoor and outdoor venues, showcasing 15 new illuminated artworks including nine world premieres.
The trail is complemented by a festival programme of live performance, 3D projection shows and by the six mile-long Blackpool Illuminations display.
These are the art trail and festival programme highlights:
ART TRAIL (6pm to 10pm nightly until Saturday 30 October unless otherwise stated)
Spiro, Tower Festival Headland
Take a walk on the light side! Spiro is an immersive walk-through tunnel of light spanning 26 metres in length and made up of individually mapped LEDs.
Tower Projections, Comedy Carpet
Immerse yourself in the mesmerising 3D projections as they light up the historic Blackpool Tower building. Experience Astral Dreams, a stunning laser-powered performance; Moon Folk, an enchanting adventure of charming fantasy animals as they overcome their fears, and the spectacular Tower Light Show.
Aqualux, Tower Festival Headland
A stunning eco-friendly light feature to highlight the importance of water..
*House Of Cards, Central Promenade
Digital Playground, Bickerstaffe Square
A walk-through forest installation of oversized robotic flowers. As visitors move around, the sculpture will subtly change in mood and appearance.
And Then I Slipped, Winter Gardens
New for 2021, slip under the shimmering lights of the waterfall and see where it takes you. This unique installation allows you to step into a scene reminiscent of childhood films, a dreamy space where anything could happen.
Luma (available 27-30 October), Winter Gardens
Luma is a huge, eight-metre long, robotic inflatable snail who loves an audience. She looms above visitors with a presence which is gentle, welcoming and very surreal!
Power the Tower, Winter Gardens
Can you pedal hard enough on our specially adapted light up bikes to generate enough power to light up our Blackpool Tower model? Put your pedal power to the test!
500, Pavilion Theatre, Winter Gardens
Since the 1800s, Blackpool has been Britain’s most popular beach resort. At 500, we showcase just four of the resort’s glittering entertainment venues that have been a mainstay of Blackpool for more than a century. Grab a deckchair, relax, and enjoy a taste of our wonderful history.
The Nature Take Over, St John’s Church
It’s not every day a landmark town centre building is reclaimed by nature as large vines, flowers, fruit, fungus and creatures take over the church exterior. This large-scale projection shows bold and colourful hand-drawn animations as they beautifully dance and sweep over the building’s surface, synchronised to music.
White Tiger*, Houndshill Shopping Centre
The beautifully bright White Tiger roars into Blackpool, also courtesy of Chila Kumari Singh Burman. The car was originally created to celebrate the launch of the critically-acclaimed film The White Tiger, which is based on the New York Times bestseller and 2008 Man Booker Prize-winning novel of the same name. Netflix partnered with Burman to bring the car to life.
Big Bird, Abingdon Street
New for 2021, this 3.5 metre high pigeon sculpture is made out of the parts of 10 London taxis and illuminated by the Blackpool Illuminations team! It’s a unique installation and not to be missed.
100 Local Lanterns (available 27-29 October), The Old Electric, Springfield Road
Beautiful lanterns created in a series of workshops will be on display in The Old Electric, forming an immersive community exhibition.
LIVE PERFORMANCES (various dates/venues)
Symphony of Light, Olympia, Winter Gardens, 7pm–9:30pm, Friday 22 October
An unforgettable live experience with music, lasers, artwork and immersive lighting effects. Shows every 30 minutes.
World Fireworks Championship Blackpool, Tower Festival Headland, 8.30pm, Saturday 23 October
The finale of the fireworks championships featuring a celebratory display by Titanium Fireworks will light up the night sky.
Illuminated Tram Parade Featuring Spark!, Central Promenade, 5.30pm, Wednesday 27 October
Back by popular demand and for one night only, the illuminated tram parade features a battleship, trawler and Great Western train travelling in convoy, joined by the high-impact drumming and superb choreography of the Spark! LED drummers, Lumidogs and a cast of illuminated giant puppets.
Global Grooves Carnival, The Blackpool Tower Ballroom, 6pm and 8pm, Thursday 28 October
An exhilarating menagerie of illuminated carnival characters will hit The Blackpool Tower Ballroom floor for an electrifying performance of music, puppetry and dance. Note: The two free performances are now fully booked.
Silent Disco, The Blackpool Tower Fifth Floor, 7pm-9.30pm, Friday 29 October
Suitable for all ages, our Silent Disco will have three different music choices playing continuously throughout the night.
The Nixies of Oakpool by The Electric Sunshine Project (Springfield Road) 6.30pm and 7.30pm, 27, 28, 29 October
A spellbinding, interactive story using animation, puppetry, lights and music to retell how the Illuminations really came about.
For the most up-to-date information please visit visitblackpool.com/lightpoolfestival
The Lightpool Festival is sponsored by Arts Council England, Winter Gardens, The Blackpool Tower, Fox Bros, Studio Due, the TBID and VisitBlackpool.
*The appearance of the White Tiger and House Of Cards installations at Lightpool Festival is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund