Towneley Hall Hosts A Surprise Worth ‘Earring’ About
28th August 2014
Jade Jagger visited Towneley Hall in Burnley today to present a National Lottery Award to one of the artists behind an immense 2.5 metre chandelier made of earrings.
Lauren Sagar, along with fellow artist Sharon Campbell, created The Chandelier of Lost Earrings from over 3,000 single earrings donated by owners who have lost the other half of the pair.
It has been voted the Best Arts project in this year’s National Lottery Awards, the annual search for the UK’s favourite Lottery-funded projects.
Sharon and Lauren had the idea for the project after talking to staff at St Mary’s Hospital in Manchester about how people respond positively to art installations. They invited women to contribute an earring and a letter explaining the story behind how they lost one of the pair.
The chandelier is currently on display in Towneley Hall before going on a tour around the country.
Jewellery designer Jade said: “The Chandelier of Lost Earrings is a stunning artwork that speaks to people visually and emotionally. Thanks to National Lottery funding, Lauren and Sharon were able to create a piece of art that is incredible to look at, and reflects the rich tapestry of life through the many stories associated with the earrings. I feel proud to present the award to Lauren; her and Sharon very much deserve this recognition.”
Lauren said she was delighted to have won the Award and thanked the public for their support: “To win the Award and meet Jade in one day was fantastic. We really put our all into campaigning hard for votes and I’m delighted it has paid off and that other people have been as touched by the stories behind the chandelier as we have. We are so grateful to National Lottery players, without your funding we wouldn’t have been able to create the chandelier, and discover the touching tales from the wonderful women who donated earrings. This award is shared with all of you.”
One of the first women to contribute an earring to the chandelier was also at Towneley Hall. Jean Pearson has over 150 pairs of earrings and says that they remind her of happy times with her late husband, who passed away this year.
She said: “My earrings are so much more than just jewellery; they bring back memories of my husband. “The Chandelier of Lost Earrings seemed like such a perfect idea. I could happily let my earring go and know that it was part of something much bigger and meaningful to the community of women as a whole.”
The artists behind the Chandelier of Lost Earrings received £9,500 of National Lottery funding through Arts Council England. Their work will be celebrated on The National Lottery Stars on BBC One on Friday 19 September at 10.30pm and they will also receive a £2,000 prize to spend on the project.
About the National Lottery Awards:
National Lottery players raise over £33 million a week, to support people and projects across the UK. Since the National Lottery began in 1994, over £31 billion has been raised and over 440,000 projects have received National Lottery funding. The Awards are a great way to show Lottery players where their funding has gone and the life-changing difference playing the Lottery every week is making to communities across the UK.
There are seven categories in the Awards, reflecting the main areas of Lottery funding: arts, education, environment, health, heritage, sport, and voluntary/charity.
Notes to editors
For more information contact Nicola Bligh on 0207 211 3991, or Nicola.Bligh@Lotterygoodcauses.org.uk