Ayahuasca Anthropology

Drawing the invisible – Ayahuasca experiences visualized

Cristopher Art, Illustrations, Research

Due to my background in illustration and social anthropology I'm fascinated what can be created in their intersection. Combining them in order to illustrate higher states of consciousness and the sphere of imagination became a passion for me during the last two years at the faculty of social anthropology at the Unversity of Bern, Switzerland. It is this space where no machine is able to enter which causes awe and fascination. To explore this realm I asked myself the following research question:

How can Ayahuasca experiences be explored through drawings?

Ayahuasca is a psychotropic substance which helps shamans throughout the South American rainforest to step into contact with the spirit world and to communicate in higher states of consciousness. Since November 2018 I’m collecting individual Ayahuasca experiences around the world (in Vienna, Basel, Bern, San Francisco, Ecuador) and converted my own experience into a short comic. Due to my still ongoing research I will only present my own illustrated ayahuasca experience here. More scientific results and a publication of my completed research will appear approximately in Summer 2020 on (Research Gate and Linkedin).

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I’m doing this anthropological research in order to participate in sensory ethnography and the debate around the potentialities which rise from the combination of social sciences and art. Further, I’m concerned about our relationship towards nature. It is obvious that we still know very little about this amazing place we call earth. To put it in the words of one of the greatest western researchers in this topic:

Nature is not our enemy, to be raped and conquered. Nature is ourselves, to be cherished and explored.

– Terence McKenna

If you want to explore my further work as illustrator or my ongoing research, please contact me here: c.kobler@visusartis.ch or just continue scrolling through my website.

With best regards,

Cristopher Kobler Betancourt