Meow Wolf: Immersive Art Experience

Is it a house?  Is it a maze? Is it a portal to another dimension?  Is it a museum? It is all of these! It’s Meow Wolf! This is a museum worth seeing when you visit Santa Fe, NM.  After a group of creative artists assembled temporary installations and earned local acclaim, CEO Vince Kadlubek knew they were on to something.  Meow Wolf’s work was initially funded through grants, donations, ticket sales, and investors, and soon became a for-profit corporation. It opened its first permanent exhibition in 2016:  The House of Eternal Return. It is a 22,000 square-foot multi-media house where most rooms lead to a new dimension. As of July 2018, Meow Wolf welcomed its one-millionth visitor.

Imagine if you will . . . In the House of Eternal Return, you find your way through 70-odd rooms in the exhibition.  There is not a correct start or end as one can choose their own adventure. One can walk through the house and make up their own story about the mysterious family who lived there or rent the audio tours in which artists talk about the different rooms.  Take your time and open all doors, even the refrigerator and dryer doors, or you might miss part of the experience. You might even miss a room or two if one does not keep a sharp eye or an open mind.

Meow Wolf is a shining example of immersive art. Their use of technology, interactivity, and storytelling creates multisensory experiences which enable the viewers to actually participate in the art.  Because of its originality and creative vision, interactive installations (part amusement parks, part offbeat art exhibitions) will be coming to cities across the country. The second permanent installation for Meow Wolf is set to open later this year in Las Vegas. A third will debut in Denver in 2020, with yet another planned for Washington, D.C. in 2022.

This museum has a form of art like no other exhibition one can imagine. The house is a renovated bowling alley.  A TripAdvisor review called it “Burning Man in a bowling alley,” referring to a hard-to-pin-down experiment in art and community.  So when in Santa Fe, put Meow Wolf at the top of your list, and be prepared to enter another dimension full of wonder.  Like Alice from Alice in Wonderland, your experience might compare to going down-the-rabbit-hole.

As visitors say, “You just have to see it for yourself!” When Meow Wolf howls, people listen. Meow! Wolf!