Date:October 29, 2020

1950s Experiment Made Artist Take LSD and Draw the Same Portrait 9 Times, and Each Portrait Got Crazier

During the 1950s the US government did a lot of examinations with psychotomimetic drugs (truth be told, as anyone who’s seen or read ‘The Men Who Stare At Goats’ will know, the US government used to do a wide range of odd and magnificent trials). One of these examinations included nourishing human guineas pigs estimated amounts of LSD and afterward observing their resulting conduct.

In one specific examination, Oscar Janiger, a University of California-Irvine specialist known for his work on corrosive, gave a craftsman a movement box loaded with colored pencils and requested that he draw his encounters on LSD. Also, as should be obvious from these 9 lighting up pictures, the outcomes are similarly as trippy as you’d anticipate.

Things begin typically enough, yet it doesn’t take some time before the craftsman’s view of reality begins to twist, and his drawings (which were as of late transferred by someone called juraganyeri) catch in captivating subtlety the different phases of his stimulating excursion, from the earliest starting point of his outing directly through to his reversal.
Please, don’t try this at home!

1 Time: 20 Minutes After The First Dose (50ug)

An attending doctor observes – The patient chooses to start drawing with charcoal. The subject of the experiment reports – ‘Condition normal… no effect from the drug yet’.

2 Time: 85 Minutes After First Dose And 20 Minutes After A Second Dose Has Been Administered (50ug + 50ug)

The patient seems euphoric. ‘I can see you clearly, so clearly. This… you… it’s all… I’m having a little trouble controlling this pencil. It seems to want to keep going.’

3 Time: 2 Hours 30 Minutes After First Dose

The patient appears very focused on the business of drawing. ‘Outlines seem normal but very vivid – everything is changing color. My hand must follow the bold sweep of the lines. I feel as if my consciousness is situated in the part of my body that’s now active – my hand, my elbow… my tongue’.

4 Time: 2 Hours 32 Minutes After First Dose

The patient seems gripped by his pad of paper. ‘I’m trying another drawing. The outlines of the model are normal, but now those of my drawings are not. The outline of my hand is going weird too. It’s not a very good drawing, is it? I give up – I’ll try again…’

5 Time: 2 Hours 35 Minutes After First Dose

The patient follows quickly with another drawing. ‘I’ll draw one flourish… without stopping… one line, no break!’ Upon completing the drawing the patient starts laughing, then becomes startled by something on the floor.

6 Time: 2 Hours 45 Minutes After First Dose

The patient tries to climb into the activity box, and is generally agitated – responds slowly to the suggestion he might like to draw some more. He has become largely non-verbal. ‘I am… everything is… changed… they’re calling… your face… interwoven… who is…’ Patient mumbles inaudibly to a tune (sounds like ‘Thanks for the memory’). He changes medium to Tempera.

7 Time: 4 Hours 25 Minutes After First Dose

The patient retreated to the bunk, spending approximately 2 hours lying, waving his hands in the air. His return to the activity box is sudden and deliberate, changing media to pen and watercolor.) ‘This will be the best drawing, like the first one, only better. If I’m not careful I’ll lose control of my movements, but I won’t, because I know. I know’ – (this saying is then repeated many times) The patient makes the last half-a-dozen strokes of the drawing while running back and forth across the room.

8 Time: 5 Hours 45 Minutes After First Dose

The patient continues to move about the room, intersecting the space in complex variations. It’s an hour and a half before he settles down to draw again – he appears over the effects of the drug. ‘I can feel my knees again, I think it’s starting to wear off. This is a pretty good drawing – this pencil is mighty hard to hold’ – (he is holding a crayon).

9 Time: 8 Hours After First Dose

The patient sits on bunk bed. He reports the intoxication has worn off except for the occasional distorting of our faces. We ask for a final drawing which he performs with little enthusiasm. ‘I have nothing to say about this last drawing, it is bad and uninteresting, I want to go home now.’