Making Art/Making Community

March 8th-April 29th, 2018

Artists are problem solvers and thinkers- imagining alternative realities and solutions for living. This exhibition looks at artists using social bridging strategies in their artmaking through participatory experiments, humorous social critiques, and collaborative craft. These artists pull tactics from social science, psychology, education and design thinking. Referred to as “social practice” or “relational aesthetics” these artists use human relations as their artistic medium rather than a traditional independent creative practice.

Push Play

Opening Reception: October 12th, 5-8 PM

Exhibition: October 12th– November 19th


Push Play explores the work of artists who borrow from play and games to reveal social, philosophical, and cultural issues. From playfulness, to mathematical strategy, the artists in Push Play have mined the significance of games, reinventing them to create experiences that often involve the viewer and reflect on the nature of participation in art.

Artistic processes tied to game playing have historically attracted the avant-garde, most famously the chess master Marcel Duchamp. His artistic move had his chess partner in mind: you, the viewer. Games were also intrinsic to the work of war-addled Surrealists and Dadaists, the inventors of the exquisite corpse and automatic drawing, in their quest to upend the bourgeois pretensions of art and free the artistic imagination. In the 1960s and 1970s, the countercultural and anti-war  Fluxus group and the  New Games Foundation questioned capitalism and corporate culture by staging massive public games in city parks. Moving away from the classical chess period of kings, queens, and bishops, the works in this exhibition do not represent medieval figures of power but strategies of decision-making around contemporary issues. Among the arcade of objects in the show is a version of Guitar Hero by Cory Arcangel, hopscotch by Mary Flanagan, and Ryan Gander’s version of blackjack – while the more mystically inclined may gravitate toward Allan McCollum and Matt Mullican’s divining game.



Cory Arcangel, Ryan Gander, Jeanne van Heeswijk and Rolf Engelen, Pedro Reyes, David Shrigley, Yoko Ono, Ruth Catlow, Mary Flanagan, Futurefarmers, Allan McCollum and Matt Mullican, Paul Noble, Erik Svedäng, Jason Rohrer, Patrick Bernier and Olive Martin


Push Play is an exhibition curated by Melissa E. Feldman and organized by Independent Curators International (ICI), New York. Push Play was made possible, in part, by grants from the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, and with the generous support from ICI’s International Forum and Board of Trustees.



Fieldworks: Creative Research by DU Faculty

January 11th – February 18, 2018










The Vicki Myhren Gallery is pleased to announce a new program – an annual exhibition featuring the research and artworks of creative faculty members at the school of art and art history. The format gives each artist an opportunity to exhibit newly created works and work in progress. A special focus is the research and creative process itself.

Our initial exhibition features work from 8 artists in the DU Studio art program and Emergent Digital Practices program. A range of media will feature in the exhibition: photographs, prints, interactive 3-D printed wearables, and archive-based sculpture that explores the history of women in pioneer towns in Colorado. A portion of the space is also dedicated to work by Art History faculty members working in new and creative formats including online, curatorial, and film projects.

2018 featured artists: Jennifer Ghormley, Sarah Gjertson, Deborah Howard, Brandon Siscoe, Megan Ulrich, Kristin Stransky Mallinger, Kari Varner and Timothy Weaver

Avalanche: Institute for New Feeling

Public Performance at Denver Waste Water Treatment Facility: September 9th 

Exhibition: September 14th-October 1st





Avalanche is an enhanced water drink designed by the artist collective Institute for New Feeling. The newest addition to their ongoing wellness product line, this bottled water will be available for visitors. In addition to the Avalanche water itself, the project consists of a site-specific concert at Denver’s Wastewater campus, an exhibition at the Myhren Gallery, and an online streaming video. Avalanche is produced by Black Cube, a nonprofit nomadic contemporary art museum, in partnership with the University of Denver’s Vicki Myhren Gallery.
Avalanche water is enhanced by a human pipeline that is a playful visualization of water flow through a city and through the body. The performance presents municipal water usage as a literal concert of bodies, a system that is as captivating as it is improbable, arduous, and flawed. This work touches on the enhanced water industry, which is one of the fastest growing beverage industries today. Avalanche’s live chain-reaction filtration process exposes our complicated relationship with water consumption and the absurdities of the bottled water industry.
“By conflating the language of bottled water advertising with that of municipal water usage, we hope to push this idea of water “enhancement” to its most extreme degree. Enhanced water is one of the fastest growing beverage industries of the 2000’s. What if water could be enhanced (physically, nutritiously, energetically) by human usage rather than simply contaminated by it?
    –Institute For New Feeling