A Conference on Hallucinogens and the Creative Process.

Hawaii | Sept. 12-17

Conference Calendar/Schedule

Announcing the First AllChemical Arts Conference, an environment in which visual artists, writers, musicians and film makers can discuss how hallucinogens have influenced and informed their art activities and perceptions.

This gathering will be held on the Big Island of Hawaii from September 12-17, 1999. The theme of the conference is the relationship between hallucinogens and the creative process.

It is our anticipation that the turn of the millennium zeitgeist in the arts is toward a frank exploration of the influence of hallucinogens on the creative process. The explicit acknowledgment of the impact of induced visionary states is long past due and now is the time to gather and celebrate the powerful tools that tribal shamans and modern pharmacology have placed in the hands of the artistic community. The union between the values of the archaic world and the values of our postmodern culture through creative use of hallucinogens is the general theme of the conference. We are seeking artists whose work reflects the influence of psychedelics in its structure, point of view, thematic emphasis, and in the exploration of alternative histories and realities. The format of the conference includes lectures by a distinguished faculty of artists about their work and its relation to psychoactive substances, panel discussions, and an open forum that would allow for direct interaction between audience and the artists.

We invite you to join us for six intense days on the beautiful Kona Coast of Hawaii to explore the relationship between chemically induced visionary states and creativity. It is our anticipation that the turn of the century zeitgeist in the arts is toward a frank exploration of the influence of psychoactive plants and substances on the creative process. The explicit acknowledgement of the impact of induced visionary states is long past due, and now is the time to gather and celebrate the powerful tools that tribal shamans and modern pharmacology have placed in the hands of the artistic community. The union between the values of the archaic world and those of our postmodern culture through the creative use of psychoactive agents is the general theme of the conference.

We are interested in providing an environment in which visual artists, writers, musicians, filmmakers, etc. could discuss how these substances have influenced and informed their art activities. The format of the conference includes lectures by the distinguished artists in our faculty about their work, panel discussions, and an open forum, allowing for direct interaction between audience and the artists in a relaxed, informal atmosphere.

The three organizers have been involved in research on psychoactive plants and shamanic inebriates for over twenty years.

Terence McKenna, ethnobotanist, writer and theorist,the author of Food of the Gods, True Hallucinations, and The Archaic Revival.

Manuel Torres, is professor of art history at Florida International University, Miami, and specializes in Precolumbian art of the Andes. He is the author of The Iconography of South American Snuff Trays and Related Paraphernalia, and numerous articles on the archaeological use of DMT-based snuff powders.

Ken Symington,, is a free-lance ethnobotanical investigator having considerable field experience with ayahuasca shamanism in the Peruvian Amazon. He has recently published English translations of The Three Halves of Ino Moxo by Peruvian author/poet Cesar Calvo, and A Brief History of Drugs by Spanish philosopher Antonio Escohotado.

We hope that you will consider joining us in Hawaii this September for a celebration of the creative impact of shamanic inebriants on the artistic process

Among our distinguished faculty, the following are confirmed presenters. Updates to follow.

Alex Grey

Grey's unique series, The Sacred Mirrors, examine in detail the physical and metaphysical anatomy of an individual. These works of art are reproduced in Grey's book, Sacred Mirrors, The Visionary Art of Alex Grey. His artwork has been exhibited worldwide, including the New Museum in NYC, the Grand Palais in Paris, the Sao Paulo Biennial, and the San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art.

Mark Pesce

The co-inventor of Virtual Reality Modeling Language (VRML), is a professor at the University of Southern California's School of Cinema and Television. He is the author of Vrml: Browsing and Building Cyberspace, and Vrml: Flying Through the Web (with George Maestri).

Alice Walker (cancelled)

Acclaimed poet and novelist received the Pulitzer Prize for her novel The Color Purple. She has also received a Guggenheim Fellowship and the Lillian Smith Award from the National Endowment for the Arts. Her bestselling novels include Possessing the Secret of Joy, and The Temple of My Familiar. Her most recent novel, By the Light of My Father's Smile, is Alice Walker's celebration of sexuality, and its usefulness in accessing one's mature spirituality.

Bruce Damer

Founder and President of DigitalSpace Corporation, a research organization dedicated to the development of inhabited multi-user virtual worlds. Bruce has completed a new book Avatars, Exploring and Building Virtual Worlds in the Internet. He is a visiting scholar at the University of Washington Human Interface Technology Laboratory.

Constance Demby

Is an internationally known innovator of sound that calls forth archetypal experiences accessing the more profound levels of the mind-body-spirit. Demby is a multi-instrumentalist, painter, schuptor, and instrument designer. She concieved and constructed the Sonic Steel Instrument, The Space Bass, and the Whale Sail (huge sheets of stainless steel played wiith bows), which generate deep, resonate, primordial sounds.

Leslie Thornton

Is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Modern Culture and Media, Brown University where she teaches film and video production, experimental theater, contemporary art, and the politics of travel. She is the recipient of the 1996 Maya Deren Award of the American Film Institute and the 1995 Albert Foundation Award of the California Institute of the Arts. Her works include Adynatas (1983) and the Peggy and Fred Series (1985-present). Her current project, the Great Invisible, is the story of the Victorian traveler and adventuress Isabelle Eberhardt.

Jim Jarmusch

Is a self-avowed independent film director who projects European cinematic traditions onto retro, trampled American landscapes. Jarmusch studied at New York University's film school under Nicholas Ray. Jarmusch has won a Camera d'Or at Cannes and has established himself as a rare American auteur. A favorite trope is the foreigner on a pilgrimage through a new landscape, surrounded by uncommunicative and dysfunctional eccentrics. Jim Jarmusch wrote and directed "Stranger Than Paradise," "Down By Law," "Mystery Train," "Dead Man," "Year of the Horse," and the forthcoming "Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai."

Mark Pauline

Is the founder of Survival Research Laboratories, an organization of creative technicians dedicated to re-directing the techniques, tools, and tenets of industry, science, and the military away from their typical manifestations. SRL stages presentations consisting of a unique set of ritualized interactions between machines, robots, and special effects devices, employed in developing themes of socio-political satire.

Woody and Steina Vasulka

Steina and Woody Vasulka, key figures in the history of video art, have been working in the medium since the 1960s. In 1971 the Vasulkas founded the Kitchen, a space devoted to electronic media, video, cinema, music and perfornmsnce, which has had a significant impact on the alternative scene in New York. With Steina, Woody has been artist in residence at the National Center for Experiments in Television (NCET), at KQED in San Francisco, and at WNET/Thirteen in New York. Woody has received awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and the Guggenheim Foundation. His recent video installations include Theater of Hybrid Automata (1990) and The Brotherhood series (1998). Steina's recent work focuses on the Southwest desert landscape, and has produced major multiscreen installations, such as Scapes (1986), Ptolemy(1986) and Geomania (1989). She has recieved the Maya Deren Award from The American Film Institute and the Siemens Media Art Prize. The Philadelpia Museum of Art recently featured a major retrospective of her work.

Annie Sprinkle

Has written articles about sex for Penthouse, Hustler, Arts Magazine, Utne Reader, and The Drama Revue. Her writings have appeared in several books, among them Angry Women, Ritual Sex, and Whores and Feminists. She makes beautiful paintings using her breasts as brushes called Tit Prints. At present she is completing a documentary titled Orgasm Scrapbook.

Robert Venosa

The Fantastic Realism of Robert Venosa has been exhibited worldwide and is represented in major collections. In addition to painting and sculpture, he is involved in film design. He has created pre-sketches and conceptual design for the films Dune, Fire in the Sky, and Race for Atlantis for IMAX. His work has been the subject of three books, and has been featured in OMNI magazine, and on a number of CD covers, including those of Santana and Kitaro.

Lewis John Carlino

Internationally renowned film director and screenwriter. He directed The Sailor Who Fell From Grace With the Sea, and The Great Santini. His screenwriting credits include Seconds (with Rock Hudson), directed by John Frankenheimer. He received an Academy Awards nomination for best screenplay for I Never Promised You a Rose Garden (1977).

Ben Neill

Works in the intersection of live music and interactive audio-visual performance. From 1995 to 1998 he was the curator of the music program of the prestigious contemporary art center The Kitchen, in New York City. His albums include Green Machine, originally presented as an interactive multimedia installation at the prestigious Paula Cooper Gallery in New York, and Trypticals.

Tom Robbins

Is a best-selling novelist known for his unusual plots and style. His first novel, Another Roadside Attraction, was followed by Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, which was made into a movie in 1993 by Gus Van Sant. His widely acclaimed novels include: Skinny Legs and All, and Half Asleep in Frog Pajamas.

Additional presenters will be announced soon. Please visit our website at: http://www.levity.com/eschaton/allchemicalsplash.html

Conference fee is US $1,500 per person for the six days of action-packed programs, hotel accommodations in Hawaii (2 registrants per double room) in a first-class resort, plus three delicious meals daily (vegetarian fare available). It will not be possible to book alternate accommodations and attend merely the presentations. You may of course choose to room together with a registered friend or spouse. A limited number of single rooms are available for a $200 supplement to the conference registration. Fee does not include travel to the hotel, located 7 miles (10 min.) south of Kona International Airport in Hawaii's big island. Sessions commence at 11:00 AM in the hotel conference room, and close at noon on the final day; additional room and meal charges will be your responsibility and payable directly to the hotel. Should you wish to arrive before, (or stay after) the conference opening and closing dates, you must make reservations directly with the hotel---we are unable to reserve nor confirm such. Upon registration, we will send you the telephone and fax numbers for the hotel.. Please note that all registrants and all faculty members will stay at the same hotel. Please remit check or money order (sorry, no credit cards) for full, non-refundable fee (unless conference is cancelled for unforeseen reasons beyond our control) to reserve your space, and please include your telephone number and single room request and supplement, if so desired. Space is limited so we suggest early registration to avoid a disappointment. We request you submit a one-page biography detailing salient education and background. The lectures and panel discussions are geared to interested aficionados, and are easily accessible to neophytes-whereas experts will find ample opportunities for personal interaction with our slate of renowned artists. On receipt of your registration, we will confirm your acceptance and remit all requisite details about the conference.

Consider joining us in Hawaii this September for a celebration of the effects of hallucinogens on the creative process. I will look forward to hearing back from you ASAP. Only one hundred registrants will be accepted.

You may contact us through the AllChemical Arts number 626-355-7893 or

e mail directly to registrar Ken at


Please make your check or money order payable to AllChemical Arts and remit to: P.O. Box 204 Sierra Madre, CA 91025 phone: (626) 355-7893 fax: (626) 355-4293