Connecting young people
and galleries to spark change

Circuit was a four-year national programme connecting 15-25 year olds to the arts in galleries and museums working in partnership with the youth and cultural sector. Led by Tate and funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, it provided opportunities for young people to steer their own learning and create cultural activity across art disciplines.

Circuit involved Tate Modern and Tate Britain; Tate Liverpool, Tate St Ives and partners from the Plus Tate network: Firstsite, Colchester; MOSTYN, Llandudno; Nottingham Contemporary; Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester; and Wysing Arts Centre and Kettle’s Yard Cambridgeshire.














The scale, structure and ambition of the Circuit programme provide a unique opportunity to gain insights into the nature and value of young people’s engagement with visual art and culture.

– Emily Pringle

Circuit is built on Tate’s long-term work with young people, often in vulnerable situations. It recognises that a successful programme, one that has real impact on young people’s lives, offers: varied entry points, differing levels of support and progression, the ability to influence the arts organisation in a visible and tangible way, the role of visual art as a catalyst to expression and production across art disciplines and a co-learning environment nurtured by participating artists and gallery staff.

Circuit is designed with and for young people at each gallery, through four main delivery strands:

  • Festival – a large scale event to attract a wide and diverse new audience
  • Partnerships – with our colleagues in the youth sector to support those with least access to the arts
  • Peer – led  – artistic programme delivered by and for young people
  • Digital – creating new work and sharing our learning


Research and evaluation are embedded throughout Circuit. The Paul Hamlyn Foundation has provided Tate and Circuit partners with a rare chance to investigate, measure, develop and inspire ways of working through culture for the benefit of young people, over a four year period.

Working with artists, the youth sector and a diverse range of young people, we are exploring how:

  • To make a positive difference with and for young people
  • To improve access and opportunities for ‘harder to reach’ young people through extending and developing sustainable networks between the arts and youth sector
  • To develop and change practice within and across cultural organisations
  • To change attitudes and behaviours towards and about young people

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