The ‘northern lights’ flickering over Bolton town hall is not something you would expect to see in December but a light festival coming to the town is promising just that. With a nod to the well known Lancastrian phrase heard in households across the region, the free ‘Put Big Light On’ festival will take place across Bolton town centre from November 30 to December 9.
Organisers say the the town will be transformed for six ‘magical’ winter evenings where visitors can experience the mysterious northern lights over Victoria Square, see the moon up close at Bolton library and museum and immerse themselves into a world of colourful and interactive artwork across other locations.
The installations have been created by artists from around the world including Borealis by Dan Acher, Museum of the Moon by Luke Jerram and Evanescent by Atelier Sisu. The six evenings of the festival are Thursday, November 30, Friday, December 1, Saturday, December 2, Thursday, December 7, Friday, December 8 and Saturday, December 9.
The events programme states Borealis by Dan Acher ‘brings the magical mystery of the northern lights to Victoria Square, using layers of light and particle clouds to create the illusion’. Within Bolton Library on Le Mans Crescent, visitors will be able to view Museum of the Moon by Luke Jerram.
The installation measures six metres in diameter, and features 120dpi detailed NASA imagery of the lunar surface. At an approximate scale of 1:500,000, each centimetre of the internally lit spherical sculpture represents five kilometres of the moon’s surface.
Other attractions at the festival include Evanescent by Atelier Sisu which has been exhibited in 24 different cities in 18 different countries. It is described as ‘bridging the gap between art and architecture’.
Stringed by Gijs Van Boon strings together words, which in turn form sentences and then flow into text. These are seemingly suspended and scattered in mid-air with waves of animated light dots converging at the last moment into a narrative that passes out of sight as soon as it arrives.
Interactive off-grid audio visual machines will also be illuminating the town centre streets during the festival. The electric trikes travel along projecting colourful animations with accompanying sound scapes.
Bolton Council’s cabinet member for culture, Coun Nadeem Ayub, said: “I’m looking forward to seeing Bolton town centre full of people enjoying the festival, boosting the local economy and supporting our local businesses.”