Instruments of Industry. Photo: John Lynch.

Instruments of Industry. Photo: John Lynch.

Final New Expressions 3 commission opens in Rochdale

By Touchstones Rochdale

12 April 2016

Hannah Leighton-Boyce: Instruments of Industry

25th March - 11th June 2016

Gallery 3

Touchstones Rochdale

The Esplanade, Rochdale OL16 1AQ
Tel. 01706 924492

The final collaborative commission of New Expressions 3 has gone live this Spring. Artist Hannah Leighton-Boyce has benefited from a New Opportunities Award commission in partnership with Visual Arts South West, Arts Council England and Touchstones Rochdale. Through this development of her practice, Leighton Boyce has created new research and sound based work in response to the Museum’s archive, collections and location. Her exhibition, Instruments of Industry, explores the resonance of these now silent objects, injecting new life and levels of interpretation into the collection.

Speaking about the show, Hannah Leighton-Boyce explains: “The air conditioning of the archive hums to the tune of D. The tools on the shelves hold a latent memory of an action, the resonating sounds created in the molding, measuring, bending and shaping of process and a material.

Instruments of Industry approaches the tool as an extension of ourselves; our contact, relationship to and being in the world. It draws on the connection between the Museum’s collection of trade tools and their resting place, a former engineering works which now houses the archive. These prehensile tools have been elevated to museum objects and represent our pre-industrial relationship to work. Disembodied from the hands and minds that worked them, they are no longer ‘present at hand’ and remain at a distance, carefully preserved as an object of aesthetic and historic value.

Using sounds captured from ‘ringing’ the tools, the work is composed as a series of movements and explores resonance as a way of touching and conversing. From the working hand to the disembodied, from the real to the imagined, to the coming present.”

Touchstones Rochdale is an award winning Arts & Heritage Centre with an art gallery, museum and Local History Centre.  It has a regular programme of contemporary visual arts exhibitions. Visit

Address: The Esplanade, Rochdale OL16 1AQ
Tel. 01706 924492 | Touchstones Rochdale |  @Touchstones