The Unconfirmed Makeshift Museum (UMM) is a flexible project space with a playful utopian sensibility, conceived as an intervention in suburban Irvine, California. As a curatorial experiment intended to decentralize circulation of contemporary practices, UMM integrates the sensory, poetic, political and affective dimensions of the everyday. UMM’s mission is to provide a shifting creative platform for contemporary art through exhibitions and social practice in a community setting. UMM is infrapolitics, digging for the pleasure of doubt in the debris of heroic certainties. UMM is a space made visible by iteration over time, a way to simultaneously render and erase the lines dividing private and public, quotidian life and art, a house becoming art space and an art space welcoming neighbors. UMM is slow and shifting, kaleidoscopic and puzzling. UMM is conceived and directed by artist Mariángeles Soto-Díaz.
The all media gallery [AM] is host to works using slow, old, new or news media, glitchy, error-driven work, experimental collaborative works, and analog-digital hybrids.
The fireplace gallery [F] has ashes of other F galleries, and is curated around ideas of affect and that which animates ordinary life, text as material, fire, hearth, wood/ash, and potentially incendiary issues, in no particular order.
The powder room gallery [PR] activates the spirits of Chicago, Duchamp, Manzoni and Sherrie Levine’s bathroom works by showing contemporary art based on grooming rituals, detritus, and works that use the bathroom as a stage.
Q: What is the Unconfirmed Makeshift Museum?
A: It’s an artist-run independent contemporary art space, part lemonade made with life’s lemons, part institutional critique, part suburban intervention, part resistance.
Q: What do you mean by utopian, a hefty word used in your mission statement?
A: By utopian I mean a kind of systematic exploration of imagining a better future and new paths of resistance, using conceptual and ludic modes of critique of the status quo as igniting materials for creative praxis.
Q: Why the name?
A: UMM came out of a need to re-imagine the idea of the museum with its museum-going-public to make an artist-run space embedded in the neighborhood, one that becomes visible through iterations.
Q: Who supports the Unconfirmed Makeshift Museum?
A: UMM has yet to receive any grants, but donations are welcome and tax deductible via the Pasadena Arts Council, a 501c(3) charitable organization. UMM has been selected for the Pasadena Arts Council’s EMERGE Fiscal Sponsorship Program, which offers emerging organizations the ability to seek funding through fiscal sponsorship, and supports participants during a crucial stage with the guidance and oversight of an established nonprofit.
Q: Where are you located?
A: Roughly, we are located 40 + miles South of Los Angeles County, in the middle of a county with a deceptively colorful name: