Day Trips: Meow Wolf, Santa Fe, N.M.

New Mexican artist collective turns an old bowling alley into a modern fun house

Photos by Gerald E. McLeod

Meow Wolf in Santa Fe, N.M., will expand your perception of what is a fun house. The art adventure space in an old bowling alley will challenge your perception of reality while releasing your inner child's view of free play.

The interactive art space is a haunted house with the frightening replaced with the fun and silly. Instead of being startled, visitors are amazed and dazzled.

The adventure begins when you enter the House of Eternal Return in an art space largely bankrolled by George R.R. Martin, Santa Fe transplant and mastermind behind the Game of Thrones series.

The spooky quickly gives way to the enticing as you exit the house's living room through the fireplace, closet, refrigerator, stairs, or hallway. The path you choose is a portal to alternative worlds of light, sound, and touch. You create your own quest as you explore the more than 70 rooms created by 500 artists. Instead of viewing the art, you're immersed into the canvas.

The art space is three levels of universes where some openings and circular stairways are best for the short and agile. Other features, like the glowing ribs of a mastodon that are also a marimba, are at adult height. This is an experience that will thrill any age.

Meow Wolf is room after room of art that will shake your perceptions and tickle your funny bone. The art collective had a temporary exhibit in San Antonio during the 2013 Luminaria Arts Festival before opening this permanent exhibit in 2016. The group is exploring the possibility of expanding to Denver and/or Austin. For information about the Santa Fe playscape, go to

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Meow Wolf, Santa Fe, art, George R.R. Martin, Luminaria Arts Festival, fun house

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