Culture is Not your Friend

This illustration is a portrait of the counter culture icon ‘Terrence McKenna’, known predominantly for his book ‘Food of the Gods: The Search for the Original Tree of Knowledge: A Radical History of Plants, Drugs and Human Evolution’, and his many public speaking events discussing culture, psychedelics, technology, language, evolution, etc.

McKenna held the belief that human civilization had been corrupted through mass culture fuelled by capital, believing that much wisdom of shamanic civilizations with stressed importance on humanity as integrated with nature is vital for human consciousness evolution.

Much of the ideas of McKenna resonates with the realizations of the project, and is directly transferable to the concept being communicated. The illustration picks up on similar ideas of the illustration of Ram Dass (see prior post), presenting McKenna as a figure who’s consciousness is integrated with nature; a contemporary Western shaman – attempting to eradicate the sickness of the West through the promotion of spiritual ideas and the discouragement of engagement with cultural constructs.

The photographic background of the Annapurna mountain in Nepal makes an attempt to portray Mckenna with the ‘Godliness’ of nature that has been discussed, which when seen in context next to the illustration of the Primark CEO, Paul Marchant (prior post) is emphasised. In addition to these ideas being communicated, the illustrations are also an attempt to introduce an audience to new thinkers and ideas through visual attraction, in contrast to the stimulus that is generally projected into the culture for capitalistic purposes – encouraging alternatives to conventional culture.




  1. awesome illustration brotha! Mckenna talked a lot about artists being an important bridge between the two “worlds”. Put this image on a shirt and I think you’ll have a best seller!

    1. Thank you very much! Yeah he has a foreward in a book of Venosa paintings where he describes artists as visual shaman, ha. I’d love to have it on a shirt, just need a company who would like it too!

      1. You should def look into it. Use your talent to open minds and spread the message of this cultural pioneer, all while creating a new stream of revenue for yourself. Send me an e-mail bro. I’d love to discuss the idea further and potentially collaborate if you are open to it.

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