Writer in Residence MK50 Art Trail App brings public art to life

Posted 7th February 2017

Milton Keynes 50th Birthday year not only calls for celebrations, but also for exploration! 2017 offers a chance for residents and visitors play with the city, which is why MK Council’s art team has commissioned ‘Writer in Residence’, Rachel Barnett, to bring MK’s public art to life through the MK50 Art Trail app.

The Public Art Audio walking tour takes you across 13 pieces of public art around Milton Keynes, each telling a different fictional story about the piece of art. The tour begins at the Milton Keynes Museum in Wolverton, but shorter tours can start at Artwork #2, the Octo, outside Norfolk House in Central Milton Keynes. The MK50 Art Trail app is free to download for Android and iPhone users.

The stories narrated in the app were written by Writer in Residence, Rachel Barnet. Rachel was offered a 6-month residency to engage with the community and offer writing opportunities to schools, community groups and businesses.

Rachel has had a long relationship with Milton Keynes and works primarily as a playwright and has had plays produced at theatres in the UK and abroad. Rachel’s writing projects to date include original work, adaptations, translations, theatre in education projects, pieces for young audiences and young performers, and dramaturgy of collaborative devised work.

As well as the app audio trail, Rachel created an education pack for schools in Milton Keynes focussing on creative writing using Milton Keynes’ public art as inspiration. The education pack encourages pupils to use their imagination to write a fictional story based on the public art, ‘Dream Flight’ by Philomena Davis which can be found in Centre:MK.

More information about the M50 Art Trail app and the education pack can be found on the MK Council website. http://www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/leisure-tourism-and-culture/arts-and-heritage/arts-education