Secret Self(ie) is MK Gallery's current young people's project. The project is free and open for anyone to get involved in aged between 14 and 18.

The project sees MK Gallery associate artists work with the young people on creative projects using a variety of different art forms. Secret Self(ie) all happens in a relaxed and fun environment, where those taking part can meet new friends, learn new creative things and help lead an artistic project at MK Gallery.

Current group 

After the Not- So -Secret Selfie Exhibition in September 2019, the group continued to meet fortnightly. In January and February 2020, the fortnightly meetings were used by the young people to shape the summers programme. Participants chose the artforms and artists they would like to book.

During lockdown, the group stayed in touch and thought about future projects they would like to take part in. In August, the group met and in September they took part in a workshop with Dylan Fox and Big Shop Friday to explore identity and representation.

In Autumn 2020, The Secret Selfie met for a week of workshops and hangouts to rebrand themselves. Their relaunch will take place when it is safe to do so and they will be inviting young people 14-18 to join them. Keep an eye on our instagram for updates.

For information on how to join our young people's group please email learning@mkgallery.org


The Secret Self(ie) Project | Summer 2018 & 2019

The Secret Self(ie) Project is about thinking more creatively and exploring who we really are, who we could be and who we want to be encouraging young people to explore new ways of thinking about life that are open, creative, and empowering. 

Young People aged 14-18 were invited to take over the MK Gallery Event Space to transform a creative hub, working alongside inspiring artists and practitioners in the creation of a series of events of exhibitions.

As well as being a creative experience, the project provides space to talk about things that might be on your mind from any part of your life with your peers and with the team helping you to realise your most creative self.

Summer 2019 Programme:

22 - 27 July Jonny Clapham – Storyteller/Zine & Comic Creator

29 July – 3 August Ciara Callaghan – Textile Artist

5 August – 10 August Sophia Tyler – Body Art Practitioner

12 August – 17 August Helen Parlor – Dance Artist

19 August – 24 August Thomas Walker – Analogue Photography Artist

26 August – 31 August Willie Robb – Digital Photography Practitioner

Lost and Found | 2007-2014

In 2006 Milton Keynes Gallery ran a series of consultation workshops to find out what young people wanted from a contemporary art gallery in the heart of Milton Keynes. Consultation revealed that there were many young people in the area interested in contemporary art but feeling disconnected with the gallery's activities to date. As a growing city there is a predicted significant increase in the youth population and Mitlon Keynes Gallery was keen to bridge this gap and involve this age group in the activities of the gallery in a much more inclusive manner. 

From this period of consultation was born Milton Keynes Gallery Young People’s Project (YPP) which was rebranded with its own identity as Lost and Found. Lost & Found activities were co-ordinated by a committee who liaise with a wider circle of young people from Milton Keynes and the surrounding area. The remit of the group was to enable young people to take on exciting opportunities and challenges to explore, create, debate and initiate cultural projects and events, visual art, music and film events. With funding from The Big Lottery the committee successfully engaged their peers, worked with professional artists, participated in workshops, training sessions, research trips and debates to expand their own and others knowledge of what culture contributes to society.