Friday, April 13, 2012

Jermalism: Cascading Confession

Creating and sharing the Cascading Confession on the walls of Vancouver changed my life, and profoundly changed me. I finally screamed what I had always been afraid to whisper. I held in a shameful secret that haunted me and filled me with self hatred and rage until I was 30 years old. I shared this secret with only a small handful of people over the years, in moments of utter weakness and despair. I had never told my family this secret. But in 2008, along with Ninja IX, I created the Cascading Confession, which is made up of 54 pages of standard paper. The base layer of text printed on the pages of the Cascading Confession is the unfinished first draft of a semi-autobiographical novel that I am still working on to this day. It is called SCam. On top of that are hundreds of individual stencil letters etched onto the pages, raining down into a poem. This poem revealed my secret once and for all to the world. There was no more hiding. It was time for me to start healing. The Cascading Confession was pasted up in full in three different locations in Vancouver. And though I had finally shared this shameful secret and passed the burden on to the viewer and the people of Vancouver, I couldn't seem to let go. I continued to break the confession into columns and individual pages that I called Cascading Confession Fragments, and I carried them with me every day. I continued to paste up these fragments across the city for years, void of the context which they represent, but with each and every page that I pasted, I found that I was learning to let go. Eventually I started wrapping them around furniture, spray cans and newspaper boxes. I suppose that subliminally this represented the way that I felt that this had been all consuming and had completely wrapped me up, and thus wrapping the confession around these inanimate objects also helped me to shed some of the pain, by giving it to them, the way I had given it to the city and its inhabitants. I still carry some of those pages with my everywhere I go, and randomly paste them up.

cascading confession

cascading confession

the sky's the gimmick. the ground's the limit.

over the edge and into the rock bottom

looking down on myself

the non-corporate ladder

bonsor skate park

Boyz n tha hood

Ken Barbour & cascading confession column 2

jerm IX & andrew01

sunday morning (cascading confession column)

left for dead

jerm IX & indigo

crumpled cascading confession column

cascading confession 

cascading living room

jermalism box (front)

jermalism box (back)

ccf shelf

ccf shelf (back)

jermalism newspaper box


"high coup"

"IX flew over the cuckoo's nest"

"don't make a scene jerm!"

if a soldier dies but once i guess i've died a thousand times

...i'm lonely



once upon a 9ine

all bent out of shape
the fountain of youthlessness


all bent out of shape


for A01

for A01

do not cross barrier

man overboard / walk the plank

writing the rails

window pains (inside out)

ccf 9


the book of A09

The Book of A09 (Chapter 2)

for cameraman

"the myth of love"

under the bridge

a&b 9

a sign of the 9ines

giant cascading confession fragment poster

cascading puzzle piece (I Got Wood 2 submission)

A Cascading Confession column, pasted to a pine panel, sold in a gallery show at Isabella Egan Gallery for $1200. This was a very humbling experience.

cascading confession fragment & illegal notice

Also humbling, was that a representation of the Cascading Confession graced the American cover of my dear friend Timothy Taylor's novel The Blue Light Project.

Click here to view more of jerm IX's street art.
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