Unconfirmed Makeshift Museum [UMM] is a flexible project space with a playful utopian sensibility, conceived as an intervention in suburban Irvine, CA. UMM’s mission is to provide a shifting, creative platform for contemporary art through exhibitions and social practice events centered on contemporary art  for the community. Inspired by the generative history of artist collectives and alternative DIY spaces, UMM is artist and community-centered, bringing together hybrid conceptual and poetic strategies, abstraction and politics. 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 project space, part lemonade made with life’s lemons, part institutional critique, part suburban intervention, part resistance.

Q: Can you explain UMM’s lemonade?
A: UMM focuses on using contemporary art, in a suburban context, as a catalyst for what Alberto Moreira has termed “infrapolitics.” Understood as an everyday mode of resistance, infrapolitics offers an alternative to dominant notions of what constitutes political action. It is an understated, slow movement, one that infiltrates the status quo over time. It occupies an abstract, ambiguous zone of politics that is not as easily recognizable as such. Infrapolitics, in Moreira’s words, is an “attempt to determine, even to thematize, the conditions under which an alternative conception of the political could perhaps become manifest.” UMM is simultaneously an art project and curatorial experiment that shifts through each iteration, knitting the functional logic of domestic, civic and cultural spaces.

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, independent 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 or external funding, 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: