Jun 1st 2017

ART ON ARMITAGE is a window gallery in Chicago dedicated to art exhibitions, installations and other creations on busy Armitage Avenue. It brings art out of the confines of the traditional art gallery and into the realm of the public.

Annie Hermes explores multiple relationships through layered impressions of human rights violations. Bright and shocking canvases with black silhouettes hang in the front window gallery, asking you to sort out the noise.

I made a three day trek into the Lao jungle. It was longer than necessary because we had to snake our way around giant craters made by bombs the U.S. dropped during the Secret War in Laos (1964-1973), forever pocking Laos’ landscape. A main mode of transportation during the trek, from treetop to treetop, over deafening waterfalls hundreds of feet in the air, was a dozen zip lines the locals had installed. I have an extreme and irrational phobia of heights, and so this part of the journey is viewed from a blurry, sort of half-conscious inner lens. Until, on the seventh zip line, my break snapped. The panic that ensued caused my consciousness to fracture. I was hurled into my mind’s delusion. My harness had snapped, plunging me, back first, like a missile, arms and legs flailing above me, into unwelcoming water. In that moment, my life became weightless and heavy. And as I watched the grains of rice in the cloud of vomit floating up to the surface of the water of my hallucination, everything became crystal clear.

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