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A glimpse of another reality awaits in "Corridor #2, 1970."
A glimpse of another reality awaits in "Corridor #2, 1970."

The Real Matrix

Ticket to The Matrix Reloaded: $8.50

Ticket to The Matrix Reloaded to understand the real meaning behind Trinity's... (oops, can't tell): $8.50

Your own personal Matrix: Priceless


"Corridor #2, 1970" at the Denver Art Museum, 100 West 14th Avenue Parkway, free, 720-865-5000.

And free.

While the rest of the shlubs in town are forking over to see a Dolby sound, flat-screen version of the matrix, a 3-D, real-life, in-your-face replica (okay, okay, so there's no mind control or super powers) is sitting in the lobby of the Denver Art Museum, tucked along the wall between the information desk and the entrance to the Hamilton galleries.

Stepping into the almost-missable mirrored corridor is like walking into a full-camera pan of the length and depth of the Matrix or Zion. Look up, look down. Light dances off the refracting mirrors, creating a world of infinity and beyond. Look left, look right. Although you are completely enclosed in the three-foot-wide space, the daily life of the museum is playing out in real time on the mirror panels. Laughing, walking, crying, talking, directing. It's a kaleidoscope of activity swirling around. Look forward, look back. Which pill to take? If you were Neo, if you could bend your mind, you could escape. Since you're not, just finish walking the fifty-foot length to the safety of the horde of DAM volunteers. (Or are they Agent Smiths?)

Normally, "Corridor #2, 1970," by artist Lucas Samaras, sits in storage as part of the DAM's permanent collection, but modern and contemporary department curator Dianne Vanderlip dusted it off -- after nearly a decade since its last sighting -- and put it on display as part of the blockbuster Retrospectacle. The work was given to the museum as a gift by Samaras for Vanderlip's fiftieth birthday; now she's offering the massive installation to the people of Denver. (Note: Volunteers suggest that only those over the age of four visit, since younger children may not be able to handle the experience.) And instead of hiding it behind the museum's $6 admission price, the corridor is open free of charge. Sneak a peak now, because come August, this mini-Matrix heads back to the basement. Just tell 'em Neo sent you. -- Amy Haimerl


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