Current Temporary Exhibitions

Formation No.12 Acrylic on Canvas, 1983, Sylvia Guirey; © Courtesy of the artist, Paintings in Hosptials.

Artworks from the Paintings in Hosptials Collection.

Arts for Health MK have welcomed five new artworks on long term loan from the Paintings in Hospitals Collection. Artworks from renowned artist Carol Rhodes, John McNeil and Sylvia Guirey join seven other artworks from their collection already on display.

Location:  Various Locations Milton Keynes University Hospital

Lady Lump and Lockdown Collection 

Penny Mitchell

A collection of photography and spoken word documenting emotions during and after a cancer diagnosis. 

Cancer Centre Link Corridor, Milton Keynes University Hospital , December 2023 onwards

Sharon Paulger

A series of screen prints on cardboard and reclaimed wood. Paulger’s artworks also take account of the hospital setting in which they are displayed.

Location:   Milton Keynes University Hospital
April - September 2023

Art Bubble Archive

COVID-19 Responsive Artworks. Created by Art Bubble Workshop Participants between August and December 2022.

Location: Online, May 2023 onwards

Ocean Motion: James Grimditch

New painting on display May 2023 - Ocean Motion (2019) acrylic on canvas, depicts a scuba diver dwarfed in scale by a whale shark.

Location: Eaglestone Restaurant, Milton Keynes University Hospital 
(Long Term Loan)

Papercut Snowflakes and Mandalas 
Astrid Bärndal

Exhibition of delicate handcut mandalas, are reminiscent of delicate snowflake patterns, tinged with colour.

Location: Milton Keynes University Hospital December 2022 - May 2023

Tape Works
Jan Harrington 

This series of artworks created exclusively using tape, for exhibiting at Milton Keynes University Hospital, are a study of colour and line. The artist is known for creating large installations out of tape, mainly in a monotone colour palette, these smaller artworks proved to need a more intense use of colour as the basis of each piece. 

Location: Online / Milton Keynes University HospitalJune 2021 - 2022

Gabrielle Radiguet

‘Paintings celebrating the awe and wonder of the English landscape.’

Location: Milton Keynes University Hospital. 
(Long Term Loan)


Lady Lump and Lockdown Collection: Penny Mitchell

December 2023 onwards


MKUH Cancer Centre Link Corridor Exhibition Space

This collection of photographs and prose were compiled by a Milton Keynes University Hospital patient who frequently walked the corridor in which her work is currently being shown. They were kindly offered for display with the intention to bring a momentary sense of colour and joy, but also with the particular hope that other cancer patients looking at the work would recognise that the person who has made it understands and for a moment that they perhaps wouldn’t feel so alone.

In 2020, Penny was diagnosed with breast cancer. Creativity became her comfort blanket and afforded an opportunity to tell a different story, her story,whilst life around her changed dramatically but one thing remained constant.

︎ Next to each image is written prose – reflections on the wider moment in time captured in the image. We invite you to read the text if you feel able to and play the audio to listen to the artist’s voice.


︎ Audio Transcript

Mountain Fall
I know what I’m wearing.
I know what top I’ve got on.
I even know what lipstick I am wearing but I don’t remember anything else because you’ve just told me
I’ve got cancer…

and I’ve just been pushed off a cliff and I don’t even have a safety harness.


︎ Audio Transcript

Path of Trust

Nature finds a way.
Cancer brings an element of trust.
I’ve got to put my trust in the team.
I’ve got to put my trust in the doctors, the hospital.
I’ve got to put my trust in myself that nature will find a way.


︎ Audio Transcript

Seasons of Spring

Spring ran parallel with the start of my treatment.
Spring is my favourite season.

The seasons change, flowers grow again, tulips arrive and new life appears.

The season was changing as was I but I kept saying to myself there will be another Spring ahead.


︎ Audio Transcript

Chemo Hair

DON’T just look at my hair.

DON’T just look at my hair.

Chemo is far more than my hair there are so many different layers, it’s not just about losing your hair.


︎ Audio Transcript

Food of Control
Food became about control.

I couldn’t control the things that were going on around me.
I couldn’t control the pandemic but I could control what I ate.

So, I spent my lockdown days loading the dishwasher and unloading the dishwasher cooking morning, noon and night creating dishes for me and that was in my control.


︎ Audio Transcript

Bees on Flowers
Some one hit my pause button when I was told I had cancer.

To have that during a lockdown allowed me that time to just STOP and take a moment and reflect and that involved just looking around at the simple things in life whether that be a bee landing on a flower or a tree rustling in the wind that was just beautiful.


︎ Audio Transcript

Feet on Sand
Throughout my treatment I just had to keep moving.

I just had to keeping putting one foot in front of the other and just keep walking.
Some days I might not of known where I was going but I needed to keep walking and not to stop.


︎ Audio Transcript

Green Spaces
I wrapped myself around nature I embraced. It became
my sanctuary,
my go to place,
my security.
My place to laugh, cry, dance.
My place to rest, face my fears, my place to reflect.


︎ Audio Transcript

Lone Tree
I’m stripped.
I’m bare,
I’m vulnerable,
I’m exposed.

My identity is going but still in the distance I can always see there are blue skies ahead.


︎ Audio Transcript

Paths and Crossroads
Some days I just didn’t know what path I was taking and you reach a point in life and it takes you down a different path. Not the path that I ever imagined, ever thought or expected but it was taking me down a different way.


︎ Audio Transcript

Creative Toolbox

Creativeness became a huge part of my recovery toolbox. One of the main things that my toolbox was all around me, everywhere, within nature and I was soaking it all up because I had the time to do this. From painting, writing, styling, gardening, they all moved me forward.


︎ Audio Transcript

Waves Crashing
Endless rounds of waves of different emotions came crashing over me.
Appointments , scans , sit up, lay down, hold your breath, undress , get dressed, text messages, phone calls, emails, injections.

How many tablets do I need to take?
Physio, keep moving, rest when you can,

Have you any questions?


︎ Audio Transcript
Trees Ahead

This was taken on my birthday just after my treatment had finished.

It reflects how I still felt I guess. That there was still tress ahead and I couldn’t always see in the distance but it was really about taking step by step and one day at a time.


︎ Audio Transcript

Beach Huts
Don’t think we are all the same because we’ve had a cancer diagnosis.
Everyone deals with it differently and you do what you do when it knocks on your door.

There is no right or wrong way only your way.


︎ Audio Transcript
Imperfect but Perfect

Take a closer a look. I’m not perfect but ...
I’m still beautiful,

I’m still here and I’m still beautiful.

I might be just a little bit different but I’m still beautiful and I’m here.


︎ Audio Transcript


I’m known for my love of lipsticks.
I love a lipstick.
I’d loved lipsticks before cancer knocked on my door like an unexpected visitor so I was NOT going to stop putting on my lipstick.

It was just part of me and that didn’t belong to cancer.


︎ Audio Transcript

Questions of Time
Time is everything.
Time moves forward, time stops.

Time becomes so important when you think your time is going to be cut short.

What you do with it.

Who you want to spend it with.

Who you don’t.

They all become about questions of time however time will bring change and along with that comes positives.

In Penny’s words:

“This collection of Lady Lump and Lockdown came about after my own diagnosis of cancer during 2020. Being creative is something I have always liked doing and being wrapped up in nature became a huge pull for me. I had time to stand and take it all in and I used that time to really look around me.  I am not an artist in the sense of the words... more of a woman who hopes this helps one person not to feel isolated and to bring a little understanding to others. If I do that then job done.”  [Penny Mitchell]

︎ Read more of Penny blog on Beauty Despite [Opens external link]

︎ @yellow.kettle

If you have been affected by this exhibition: please see our Useful Organisations pages for local organsations who can offer support.

© All artworks courtesy of the artist (2021)

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April - September 2023

Image: Just to Fill the Space 1-4 (2022), Sharon Paulger. Screen prints on cardboard and reclaimed wood 50 x 50cm.


Green Zone, cook-chill entrance exhibition space.
April -September 2023

A series of screen prints on cardboard and reclaimed wood.

“I tend to work intuitively and experimentally. Time and screen printing are the mediums I use most. The ritualistic way I work, repeating things and sometimes with constraints gives the suggestion of the progression of time in my work. Enjoyment in the creative process is a very important part of my work. I get distracted and change direction often. My focus constantly shifts between the intentional and the incidental. I make stuff and then I edit it, cutting it up and saving the bits I like best.

I am determined not to be precious about any of it. There is a particular aesthetic to my work through the use of colour and materials. I am vegan and where possible use vegan materials. I recycle, reclaim and reuse materials as I try to minimise my impact on the environment. I have always been attracted to bright colours. The flat bold shapes of colour I get when screen printing are very satisfying. ” [Sharon Paulger]

Paulger’s artworks also take account of the hospital setting in which they are displayed.

First encounters with artwork in the hosptial environment are often unexpected. Whilst many passers-by don’t have the luxury of dwell time, they do make repeat visits - and in these brief moments the artworks can become so much more. Across vast labyrinths of hospital corridors, artworks can soothe and soften the clinical environment, provide way markers and conversation points - the opportunity to briefly pause and reset.

We hope that at first these artworks grab your attention. Before pulling you in to decipher the text and the subtle differences in each print - and consideration for the thought and care behind the process of hand-printing each image. In turn, we also hope another artwork also grabs your attention today realising that they really do say far more than the title suggests.

︎ About the Artist 

Milton Keynes based artist, Sharon Paulger, recently completed an MA Fine Art: Digital with the University of the Arts London after a career in arts management, including as previous Director of Arts for Health MK. Her vibrant artworks take a mixed media approach focusing on the use of sustainable materials. Recurrent themes within Paulger’s practice include using artistic processes to articulate health and wellbeing contexts.

 Artworks in this exhibition are for sale, please email for further details.

All images courtesy of the artist.

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Papercut Snowflakes and Mandalas: Astrid Bärndal

December 2022 - May 2023 

Images: Mandala Series (2005-2006) handcut inkjet print on paper.

MKUH Level 2: Corridor Exhibition between Ward 6 and ICU/Neonatal

Informed by natural forms Astrid Bärndal’s mandalas, are reminiscent of delicate snowflake patterns, tinged with colour. Each artwork is formed of a three-layered inkjet print designed by the artist, painstakingly cut by hand with a scalpel.  

Bärndal’s, artworks were selected for display at MKUH from our previous online exhibition Mindful Mandalas which you have re-explore here. The exhibition looked at the traditional meaning and contemporary uses of Mandalas, in relation to arts and health in particular.  

︎Mandala inspired activities to try at home.

Image Gallery:

About the Artist
Bärndal trained as an industrial textile designer, but found she was more interested in fine arts and crafts. The structural precision forms of these mandalas echo the architectural forms and character of space that span her work. Discover more from the series on the artist’s website here: snowflakes / mandalas.

All images courtesy of the artist ©Copyright Astrid Bärndal.

Explore more current exhibitions ︎︎︎


Tape Works: Jan Harrington

June 2021 - 2022

Long term loan


Online / 
Near wards 4-5 (Childrens wards)

This series of artworks created exclusively using tape, for exhibiting at Milton Keynes University Hospital, are a study of colour and line.

The artist is known for creating large installations out of tape, mainly in a monotone colour palette, these smaller artworks proved to need a more intense use of colour as the basis of each piece. Once the colours have been decided, the work itself is created instinctively, with patterns emerging as tape is layered on tape, until the form becomes apparent to direct the completion of the piece. In some instances, the tape work becomes physically three dimensional as the tape slowly loses its adhesive quality creating an extra depth and a new life to the work.

Image Gallery

Please select an artwork to enlarge:

Within and without

Arts for Health collection 2020 (June 2020) 61 x 91 cm Tape on board £725

This is the only tape work that is in some way relevant to the world we have found ourselves in during 2020, as individuals within worlds created by others.

Through the rails

Through the rails - Arts for Health collection 2020 (June 2020) (61 x 91 cm) Tape on board £725

A study of line and colour, with the contrasting tones allowing a structure and depth to form through the layers.

Thick and thin

Thick and thin - Arts for Health collection 2020 (June 2020) Tape on board 61 x 91 cm, £775

Created out of pure joy of colour and fun building up layer upon layer.

Through the windows

Through the rails - Arts for Health collection 2020 (June 2020) (61 x 91 cm) Tape on board £725

Reminiscent of looking through windows into windows, the structures allow the viewer to look into worlds next door.

Display View:

︎ Events / Activities

The artist joined us at the MK Rose in Campbell park for Milton Keynes Disability Awareness Day (MK DAD) 2021, where she helped participants to make a collaborative artwork from brightly coloured tapes - read more about the event here.

︎ About the Artist: 

Jan Harrington is a contemporary artist with a studio based in Newport Pagnell, the artist graduated from BA Fine Art at the University of Northampton in 2019 in and was shortlisted for the Platform Graduate award at MK Gallery the same year. Discover more at:

All images courtesy of the artist ©JanHarrington
With thanks to the artist sponsor:

Explore more current exhibitions ︎︎︎


︎ Sales Enquiries:

Did you know? Many of the Artworks in our temporary exhibitions are for sale; at least 25% from artwork sales goes directly to Arts for Health MK and helps to fund exhibitions by emerging and established artists at Milton Keynes University Hospital; look after the Hospital’s collection and fund health and wellbeing focused arts projects in the local community. To enquire, please contact:

Tel:          01908 996125

Arts for Health Milton Keynes
Facilities Directorate
Milton Keynes Hospital
Standing Way
Milton Keynes

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Arts for Health Milton Keynes is the working name of MK Arts for Health charity number 1107625  company number 05137693