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E8: Vince Kadlubek - Part 1 | The Future of Imagination, Building Meow Wolf, the Real-World Metaverse

How Meow Wolf is building the real-world 'metaverse' we'll actually want & need

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This was my favorite conversation of the past year, both on and outside of Medium Energy. It’s a chat with entrepreneur, dreamer, and dear friend: Vince Kadlubek.

Vince is one of the most compelling thinkers I know. He's also the co-founder of Meow Wolf: one of the world's most original and exciting ventures within arts and entertainment.

For those unfamiliar, Meow Wolf is akin to a next-generation Disney, but with a unique twist… catapulting visitors into a vortex of childlike wonder & awe.

More concretely, they transform huge physical spaces into a kaleidoscope of immersive experiences that blur the lines between art gallery, amusement park, and interactive museum.

Here are some examples…

With locations flourishing in Santa Fe, Denver, and Las Vegas—and with more on the horizon—the realms they build look & feel like a real-world ‘metaverse’, transporting visitors into narratives brimming with digital art, sculpture, and an evolving array of technologies like AI, augmented reality, and spatial audio. We also discuss the potential to use cryptocurrency and NFTs… which in my opinion, is where things start to get really interesting…

This convo was too rich and expansive for just one episode, so we’re dividing it into two parts.

In this first installment, we cover:

  • The ethos driving Meow Wolf, tracing its origins and exploring a concept that resonates deeply with me: the ability to believe in the unbelievable.

  • The evolution of storytelling and its impact on our species, considering how such experiences not only offer healing and growth but can also usher in new avenues for finding purpose and meaning in our lives.

  • This idea of ‘religion without religion’, as we navigate a world where traditional religious structures have left a void (of community & places with inspiration + hope)

These themes are not just intellectually stimulating; they touch on something elemental to the human experience… something we’ll explore further into in Part II (which we’ll be releasing as a fast follow later this weekend).

For now, let’s dive into Part I!

I find these topics endlessly fascinating, and upon hearing Vince’s perspective, I think you will too. So without further adieu, I bring you, Vince Kadlubek…

Medium Energy by Evan Helda
Medium Energy: Spatial Computing, AI, Being Human
Medium Energy is a podcast & newsletter exploring spatial computing, AI, and being human in the age of exponential tech.
Medium Energy is also a mantra for human flourishing in the face of dramatic change due to technology. As our digital and physical worlds increasingly converge, Medium Energy represents the perfect balance between the these two realities, such that technology makes us more human, not less.
Medium Energy is hosted by Evan Helda: a writer and technologist who has been at the forefront of immersive tech (AR, VR, 3D) for the past 8 years. He's currently a business development leader for Spatial Computing at AWS (Amazon Web Services), driving go-to-market and product strategy for all things immersive tech.
If you're interested in listening to interviews with exciting guests like Matthew Ball (author of 'The Metaverse'), Steven Kotler (Flow expert and author of 'Stealing Fire'), or Vince Kadlubek (co-founder of Meow Wolf, then please do subscribe!