Five Ways to Immerse Yourself in Immersive Art Right Now

Immersive Van Gogh has been extended through July.
Immersive Van Gogh has been extended through July. Nina Westervelt
Ready for the immersive event of the summer? Tickets for David Byrne's Theater of the Mind, which opens August 31 in the York Street Yards, go on sale at 10 a.m. May 20.

But you don't need to wait to immerse yourself in art. While Meow Wolf's Convergence Station and RiNo venue Beacon provide endless immersive experiences, Denver is also immersed in temporary immersive events. Here are five ways to immerse yourself  right now, as well as two more shows coming this summer:

Immersive Van Gogh
Now through July
Lighthouse Art Space, 3900 Elati Street
Like Spookadelia, this Lighthouse Immersive show that premiered in Denver last October has been so successful that it has been extended through July. See Vincent van Gogh's most famous works pixelated and splashed across the walls while music composed specifically for the exhibit plays. The whole show is designed by David Korins, who is best known for his stage sets for Broadway hits such as Hamilton and Dear Evan Hansen. Tickets start at $39.99.
click to enlarge Immersive Frida Kahlo opened March 3 at Lighthouse Art Space. - KYLE FLUBACKER
Immersive Frida Kahlo opened March 3 at Lighthouse Art Space.
Kyle Flubacker
Immersive Frida Kahlo
Extended into June
Lighthouse Art Space, 3900 Elati Street
If you saw Immersive Van Gogh, know that Lighthouse Immersive is using the same format to produce Immersive Frida Kahlo. While you aren't likely to learn much about the artist, the event is sure to provide an opportunity to take social media-worthy photos. Tickets start at $39.99.
click to enlarge Interact with robo-dinosaurs at this 20,000-square-foot installation. - COURTESY JURASSIC WORLD: THE EXHIBITION
Interact with robo-dinosaurs at this 20,000-square-foot installation.
Courtesy Jurassic World: The Exhibition
Jurassic World: The Exhibition
Now through September 5
Stockyards Event Center, 5004 National Western Drive

Inspired by the blockbuster film Jurassic World, this immersive exhibition takes visitors through a 20,000-square-foot jungle of dinosaurs. Learn about different species and their evolution while you dive into the world's pre-human era. "Guests will be able to imagine what it would have been like to roam among these breathtaking creatures and even interact with baby dinosaurs, including 'Bumpy,' from the popular animated series Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous," says an announcement for the show, which opened March 2.  This exhibit is perfect for kids, or just anyone who loves dinosaurs. Tickets run from $19.50 to $99.50.
click to enlarge The Dr. Seuss Experience is a guaranteed delight for children. - NICK TARNOWSKI
The Dr. Seuss Experience is a guaranteed delight for children.
Nick Tarnowski
The Dr. Seuss Experience
Now through September 5
Centennial Promenade, 9555 East County Line Road, Centennial
This Dr. Seuss-themed show is another kid-friendly immersive experience coming to Denver. Kilburn Live has partnered with Dr. Seuss Enterprises to provide a "multisensory experience [that] will transport guests into the pages of the beloved stories and allow them to interact with their favorite characters," according to an announcement of the show. "Visitors will step inside the narratives of treasured Dr. Seuss books like The Cat in the Hat, Horton Hears a Who! and The Lorax, as well as several other timeless classics." Tickets start at $28, and other runs have sold out.
click to enlarge Immerse yourself in Lumonics. - LUMONICS.NET
Immerse yourself in Lumonics.
Lumonics Immersed
Saturdays, 8 to 10:30 p.m.
Lumonics Light and Sound Gallery, 800 East 73rd Avenue
The Lumonics art collective started offering immersive experiences decades ago, long before the immersive concept was exploited by companies that realized it was the perfect way to capitalize on iPhone-wielding influencers. Lumonics Light and Sound Gallery, which is devoted to the light sculptures of the late Mel and Dorothy Tanner, now offers weekly editions of Lumonics Immersed, an event designed to provide healing while the sculptures' glowing lights pulsate to ethereal music produced by Dorothy and Marc Billard, a composer and artist who works at the gallery. "Dorothy used to call it a vacation from yourself," Barry Raphael, the gallery's archivist, told Westword last year. Tickets are $20.

and coming this summer:
click to enlarge The Friends Experience opens in Denver June 16. - COURTESY OF THE FRIENDS EXPERIENCE.
The Friends Experience opens in Denver June 16.
Courtesy of The Friends Experience.
The Friends Experience: "The One in Denver"
June 6 through September 16
Cherry Creek West, 2500 East First Avenue
Immerse yourself in nostalgia for your favorite ’90s sitcom at The Friends Experience, which opens on June 16 and runs through September 5. Created by Warner Bros. Themed Entertainment, Warner Bros. Television Group and Superfly X, the installation will include twelve rooms brimming with nostalgia, such as the theme song fountain and Monica's kitchen. Tickets are $42.50, with discounts for students, seniors and children.

Theater of the Mind
August 31 through December 18
York Street Yards, 3887 Steele Street
And now for something completely different: David Byrne, of Talking Heads fame, and writer Mala Gaonkar co-created this neuroscience-inspired immersive show, which has been much anticipated since its original dates were postponed because of COVID. The 15,000-square-foot installation will interact with each one of your senses as you follow a Guide, who "will question how beliefs, memories and even our identities are less fixed than we think," according to the website. Prepare for a mind-bending experience, as the announcement warns: "Caution: the brain may wander. Side effects may include a distrust of your own senses, a disorientation of self, and a mild to severely good time. You may not be who you think you are. But we’re all in it together." Tickets go on sale May 20.
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Emily Ferguson is Westword's Culture Editor, covering Denver's flourishing arts and music scene. Before landing this position, she worked as an editor at local and national political publications and held some odd jobs suited to her odd personality, including selling grilled cheese sandwiches at music festivals and performing with fire. Emily also writes on the arts for the Wall Street Journal and is an oil painter in her free time.
Contact: Emily Ferguson