Wednesday March 30, 2016

This artist's grandma was a CIA guinea pig

Artist Sarah Anne Johnson's new performance piece "Hospital Hallway" reimagines her grandmother's experience with the CIA's MK Ultra program

Artist Sarah Anne Johnson's new performance piece "Hospital Hallway" reimagines her grandmother's experience with the CIA's MK Ultra program (sarahannejohnson.ca)

Listen 16:27

They were subjected to LSD, sensory deprivation and shock therapy techniques. "Patients" of the CIA's secret experiments Project MK-Ultra were a part of a dark chapter in Canadian history. 

Artist Sarah Anne Johnson's grandmother — who sought treatment for postpartum depression before it was "a thing" — was one of the victims of the mind-control experiments.

Hospital Hallway

Artist Sarah Anne Johnson's new performance piece "Hospital Hallway" reimagines her grandmother's experience with the CIA's MK Ultra program. (sarahannejohnson.ca)



In her new performance piece Hospital Hallway, Johnson tries to understand that horrific period of her grandmother's life by re-imaging the conditions she endured and exposing her own emotional vulnerabilities.

The artist will be showing the exhibition this week in her home town of Winnipeg.

WEB EXTRA | For those who aren't in Winnipeg, here is a virtual tour of the performance space.