Our Year in Art: 2019

From artist upgrades at House of Eternal Return to a dark ride, new offerings from Meow Wolf artists, and new collaborators, this was our year in art.

Meow Wolf values the creation, collaboration, and support of art and artists, both locally and around the world.

Whether it was working with local or international artists to upgrade our House of Eternal Return, opening our first art ride in Denver (nominated for best new theme park attraction), or supporting the growth of Meow Wolf’s partner artists, our 2019 saw the fulfillment of these values and more!

But, why talk about it when we can show you pieces of the incredible, creative, and innovative work that helped make Meow Wolf’s 2019 an unforgettable year for art? Let’s look back, while keeping our third eyes trained forward on the future of art. After all, we believe that artists like these — and like all you out there in the Multiverse — are creating that future as we speak.

Let’s start with…

Artist Upgrades at Meow Wolf Santa Fe

Early 2019 saw numerous upgrades in and around House of Eternal Return at Meow Wolf Santa Fe, including hallway murals by Haley Greenfeather English and Frank Buffalo Hyde, a domestic-meets-digital piece by Dominique Pétrin in our “Fancy Town” concert venue, and all new exhibit installations from Katie Green and Pip & Pop (Tanya Schultz). There were also mural additions from two of our partner artists: Mikey Rae (Legit Concerns) and Janell Langford (Obsidiopolis)!

The “Party Wiz” is the centerpiece of Haley Greenfeather English’s mural.
Frank Buffalo Hyde’s new mural revisits his “Buffalo Fields” series.
A detail of Dominique Pétrin’s installation at Meow Wolf Santa Fe.
Katie Green’s painting style involves incredible detail and combines lush natural elements, animals, and masked characters.
Pip & Pop’s new exhibit inside Meow Wolf is inspired by fictional “Lands of Plenty.”
Legit Concerns’ Mikey Rae huddles inside his new mural space at Meow Wolf.
Obsidiopolis’ Janell Langford created her aptly-named “Player One” mural for the arcade inside House of Eternal Return.

Meow Wolf’s Partner Artists

In addition to contributions made towards our upgraded experience in Santa Fe, all of our partner artists created new works of art to share with the world in 2019.

First off, we introduced our newest collaborator, Janell Langford, who presented her design universe of Obsidiopolis to Meow Wolf fans with the aforementioned mural, as well as with graphic art celebrating the Black-Femme experience.

We also saw Meow Wolf’s own recording artist and comedian, Carlos Medina, release his debut album, El Cantador, as well as the enchanting and creative music video for “No Le Digan.”

Next, Nico Salazar of Future Fantasy Delight launched his spring/summer clothing line with a party featuring Tommy Genesis, while also hosting a show at Gallery 1988 in Los Angeles.

Finally, Legit Concerns’ Mikey Rae added to his mural work before debuting his book of poetry, titled “I Want to Write a Poem That Will Inspire the World.” In other words, it was a busy year!

In Janell Langford’s “Obsidiopolis,” the artist and designer has created a utopian world ruled and inhabited by women of color.
Behind the scenes of the music video for Carlos Medina’s “No Le Digan.”
Nico Salazar at the Future Fantasy Delight spring/summer launch party.
Within the pages of Legit Concerns’ book, you’ll read philosophical musings from a panda, coyote, and a lizard.

Meow Wolf Productions, Collaborations, & Supported Projects

When we’re not making art at Meow Wolf, we’re doing everything we can to facilitate art-making in our community — and future communities, like Las Vegas and Denver! In 2019, for instance, we debuted Kaleidoscape at Denver’s Elitch Gardens, but the art itself was a collaboration between Meow Wolf artists and local artists from the Denver area, such as Graffuturist painter Michael Ortiz.

Speaking of futurism, we also collaborated with Afrofuturists Tyler English-Beckwith and Hakeem Adewumi to bring a new storyline to House of Eternal Return through their creation: The Umbra Sisters!

Occasionally, we’ll add temporary installations to Meow Wolf Santa Fe and “The House” in order to celebrate an event, or sometimes we’ll even throw a weekend music experience and work with local and international artists in order to truly immerse our participants in ART.

For example, 2019 saw Marina Fini bring colorful, therapeutic energy to Meow Wolf’s first Pride event with a temporary installation. Then, Jenny Ollikainen of Mythic Times shared a dreamy pop-up installation featuring astonishing creature masks! And where would Meow Wolf’s Taos Vortex or Dark Palace have been without the work of contributing artists such as Pussy Power House or Secret Love Collective? Nowhere, we tells ya!

Finally, there’s the art that Meow Wolf supports as producers, sponsors, and champions of artists getting paid to make their art. This means projects like the new mural created by Denver artist John Hastings (aka RUMTUM) for the city’s historic Oriental Theater. It also means the installation of “Ethyl the Whale,” created to raise plastic awareness by San Francisco’s Joel Dean Stockdill and Yustina Salnikova. It means experimental short filmmakers could be seen with Season 2 of The Eyeslicer. Lastly, it means that the strength, resiliency, and beautiful cultures of the Sun Valley community could be on display at Art + Sol, a one-day event centered around the creation of a breathtaking neighborhood mural at Namasté Solar by Faatma Be Oné and the youth artists of Sun Valley.

Michael Ortiz at Kaleidoscape in Denver’s Elitch Gardens.

Behind the scenes with The Umbra Sisters, featured in Ch. 2 of House of Eternal Return’s storyline.
Marina Fini’s installation at Meow Wolf Santa Fe for the 2019 Pride Celebrations.
Creatures from Jenny Ollikainen of Mythic Times at Meow Wolf’s House of Eternal Return.
Pussy Power House at Taos Vortex 2019. Photo by Jess Bernstein.
Secret Love Collective were featured at Meow Wolf’s Dark Palace.
Mural by John Hastings (RUMTUM) at Denver’s Oriental Theater. Photo by Rob King.
Ethyl the Whale at the Santa Fe Community College.
A still from Leah Shore, Season 2 of The Eyeslicer.
A closeup of the mural at Art + Sol. Photo by Ken Hamblin III.

What a year!

Photography by Kate Russell except where otherwise indicated.