The Museum of Contemporary Arts

Sam McMullin, Staff Writer

Museums are not  only for artists, but those seeking inspiration or an escape. Located on 20 S. West Temple, in Salt Lake is The Museum of Contemporary Arts. The current exhibitions challenge the society so many live in. They look at the legitimacy of private property and human interaction.

Artist Daniel Everett has an exhibition called “Security Questions.” In his pieces he attempts to convey a message that so many are living in a society that dehumanizes the human experience. Many websites have security questions to make sure that you’re human, but in reality, these questions are just going into an algorithm and making your experience nothing more than data. Everett’s stunning collages and photos allow for one to think more deeply about how society functions.

The main gallery, “Working Hard to be Useless,” expresses the issues of public property. This is a temporary exhibition which is only open till December 22, 2018. The artists that participated in this exhibit include Aaron Hegert, Alex Villar, Amy Yoes, Krista Svalbonas, Lynn Richardson, Mark Schatz, Mowry Baden, Nathaniel Russell, Nils Norman, Sara Ross, and Thuy-Van Vu. What’s known as public property really isn’t as public as it might appear. It shows how different structures around cities are made so that people don’t sit there or how there are random bumps put into ledges so that skateboarders can’t use them. This exhibit shows things that are seen on a daily basis, but not necessarily questioned. Why are there fences in front of single doors? Or what is the reasoning behind having spikes on certain ledges?

There is an exhibition there called, “Stack of Forms” by JP Orquiz. Normal pieces of paper are arranged across the walls. It’s not clear what the papers read, but each one is covered top to bottom in black text. Approaching the first one reveals that the dozens of papers are forms and documents that are part of the immigration process. It shows the overwhelming stress that must come from that particular process. JP’s exhibition like the others there convey a message and set an environment for individuals to be educated and inspired.

The museum is a nonprofit so there is no entrance fee, but a $5 donation is suggested. The time spent there is all dependent on what the individual wants to get out of it. Contemporary art, unlike traditional art, is made to express current day emotions and look at present issues. It is a place where one can be filled with inspiration and dive into another’s head.

Utah Museum of Contemporary Art

20 S. West Temple

Salt Lake City, UT 84101


Closed Sun & Mon

Tue – Thu: 11 am – 6 pm

Fri: 11 am – 9 pm

Sat: 11 am – 6 pm