Folie a Deux

This project is inspired by a mental illness called “Folie a Deux,” or in other words, “the madness of the two.” In this illness, two people whom are extremely close, share the same hallucinations, thoughts, and anxieties. This creates a situation where the two live in their own bubble and end up being disconnected and excluded from the rest of the world, which does not “see what they see.”


Another thing which works similar to this phenomenon is DMT; a molecule which exists in all living organisms and is responsible for our dreams. It was originally found in nature by an African tribe which used to hold ceremonies around the plant. Later, research was done on DMT.


The drug was given to a number of patients. Each of them had a 10-minute “trip” where they had various dreams. They were then asked to draw what they saw and it was found that all patients drew exactly the same elements! They claimed that they saw the people in front of them as see-through and that they saw their bones and veins.


It was found that when two people take this drug, they have the same hallucinations which no one else can see- a feeling which is similar to that of the “Folie a Deux” mental illness. These two phenomena were used as inspiration for my project.


Additionally, artist Alex Grey draws what he sees when he takes DMT, in an attempt to recreate the feeling of the “Folie a Deux.” I used his drawing as the visual inspiration for my project.


© 2019 Stav Ofman