Hard Hats and Heritage Tours: Lazerian in the Cotton Exchange

Hard Hats at the Ready for an Intimate Exhibition at One of Blackburn’s Hidden Gems.


Under wraps for more than a decade, the Victorian jewel in Blackburn’s town centre, the former Cotton Exchange has a rare public opening for a series of guided hard hat tours. After becoming the Apollo Cinema following the collapse of the cotton trade which ensured Blackburn’s prosperity in the late 19th century, the building fell into disrepair, but visitors will see and hear how its re-emergence as a focal point of the town is being planned.

Its tainted grandeur of is a provides a perfect setting for Lazerian’s Chromatogram: a series of walk-in cardboard ‘pods’ and a striking, physical expression of the unusual semi-isolation of workers in a modern factory. Chromatogram is part of Art in Manufacturinga groundbreaking set of new commissions pairing 10 exceptional artists with Pennine Lancashire’s leading manufacturers. The incredible outcomes of their residencies are positioned in Blackburn town centre’s most historic and contemporary venues.

As part of Hard Hats and Heritage Tours, experience Lazerian’s Chromatogram


During Lazerian’s residency with Blackburn-based The Cardboard Box Company he discovered an treasure trove of colours – each tone in the range has been used by the manufacturer at some stage in its production history and their use in his exotic cardboard structures represents a record of the company’s stunning gradient of colour through time. The semi-dereliction of the 1860-built Cotton Exchange, provides a unique, hard-hat-heritage setting in which to experience these exuberant colour schemes and alien forms.

Cotton Exchange, King William St / Sat & Sun 11-6 / FREE (hard hats provided) 

www.thecardboardbox.co.uk / www.lazerian.com

12th - 13th May 2018 | Blackburn, Lancashire

The National Festival of Making Delivery Team


The National Festival of Making is supported with funding from Arts Council England, Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council and Heritage Lottery Fund