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Why an Exhibition about Psychedelics?

FEBRUARY 28, 2022.

The team behind Psychedelics: The Immersive Exhibition could not be more excited about presenting this experience in the Fall of 2022 in Toronto. There has been a lot of conversation and buzz around this project - the timing, the location, and other aspects of the production.  Questions have arisen.  Questions like “Why Psychedelics?”, “Why now?” and “Why an immersive experience on this subject?” 

This blog post will take a crack at those questions, and excite you to come and check out what we’ve put together.

First off, let’s focus on the subject: neuro-pharmaceuticals, entheogens, mind-expanding drugs…whatever you want to call them. We’re calling them psychedelics. If you’re reading this, chances are you’re at least passingly interested in the subject. Maybe you’ve taken magic mushrooms. Or even ayahuasca. Maybe someone you know - a friend or family member - had an amazing, positive experience with one of these substances. Maybe someone you know had a bad trip - they can happen, too. 

If you’ve been following the news over the past few years, you’re likely aware that psychedelics are being appreciated anew.  After much of the research and science around psychedelics was shut down in the late 1960s and early ‘70s - following North America’s first cultural wave of psychedelic saturation - research has resumed over the past decade.  An ever-growing number of pharmaceutical companies are legally trialing these psychedelic substances - and developing new ones - in an effort to address serious and often intractable psychological conditions, from PTSD to end-of-life anxiety, from treatment-resistant depression to nicotine addiction. It’s an exciting time in the psychedelics community. 

The stigma that emerged in the “Psychedelic 60s”, when the media made every acid trip sound like a nightmarish torment, is fading. These drugs - their chemical profiles, the benefits and risks they pose - are now being analyzed with a newfound clarity and seriousness.  Results in clinical trials conducted at some of the world’s most reputable universities (Johns Hopkins, New York University, London’s Imperial College) have shed light on the powerful benefits these substances can offer, when administered with care and conscientiousness.  There’s a new story to tell about psychedelics. And we’re excited to share it with you in Psychedelics: The Immersive Exhibition.

For many of us, the past few years have taken their toll.  Lockdowns, isolation periods, virtual learning for the kids, travel restrictions, and other covid-related limitations on life have wreaked havoc: financially, mentally, and emotionally.  Is it any surprise that this period has also seeded interest in the ongoing “Psychedelic Renaissance”?  Or that people are increasingly curious about drugs that have been heralded (for centuries, if not millennia) for their potential in creating feelings of belonging and “oneness”?  We believe the time is ripe for us all to learn something new, and experience something incredible.  This is where we come on.  Mixing art, technology, history and education, we want to tell the story of psychedelics in a way that is entertaining and accessible. Psychedelics: The Immersive Exhibition is the perfect outing for anyone curious about expanding their mind. It’s a feast for the eyes, and the head. See you there.

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