Words alone cannot describe The House of Eternal Return. It’s unique, groundbreaking, unparalleled: a massive immersive art experience for exploration, play and adventure. Meow Wolf, an art collective, created the production. It will go live early in 2016, in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
You enter a Gothic house reminiscent of the novels of HP Lovecraft. Artifacts and decor introduce you to the personalities of those who lived there. You open a closet door. It’s a portal to another dimension awaiting exploration. You get out of your head and into another reality by climbing and crawling. You go through a dystopian shanty town, or a landscape of the future. The time travel entertains all ages.
The artists believe that life is not just serious, but also can be playful, celebratory and just plain fun.
The collective of over a hundred artists was founded in 2008. 25,000 people visited, Due Return, commissioned by the Santa Fe Center for Contemporary Art. Meow Wolf did installations in twenty-two cities across the US. Then they settled on their current permanent installation project.
George R. R. Martin, the creator of King of Thrones, invested 3 million dollars to renovate a former bowling alley. This will house the exhibit. Low-cost art studios, a gift shop selling works of local artists and an arts learning center run by a local non-profit will also be in the building. The outdoor parking area will showcase live band performances.
Before it becomes an international phenomenon, let’s take a peek under the hood to see how The House of Eternal Return is created. In the photos below, you’ll delight in the colors and forms.
The most interesting part of many of these inventions is that they are interactive and serve multiple functions. For example the “Glow Mastodon” will be reactive to touch and will make sounds when you play the ribcage like an instrument. The “Interactive Mushrooms” change color when you tap them. To me the difference between interactive and decorative is significant, especially when describing the type of work Meow Wolf does.
Most of the scenes shown below from the Life Is Beautiful Festival will be in The House of Eternal Return.
Creations Shown At Life Is Beautiful Festival, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2015
Projections, Jake Snider
Interactive Mushrooms, Caity Kennedy (collaborative)
Art Motel, collaborative mural
Assemblage, Caity Kennedy
Robot, Christian Ristow
Space Pod, Dale Bradley
Glow Mastodon Skeleton, Dale Crimmins (collaborative)
Forest Creatures, Sarah Bradley
I hope that you are as excited as I and can’t wait ’till it opens to visit. See you at The House of Eternal Return!