Bug Out Chicago

An exploration of insects through time.

Please join us at Ars Memoria Art Gallery 

1770 W Berteau Ave, Suite 506 Chicago, IL 60613

Suggested donations will be accepted at the door, and are greatly appreciated!

The event will run from July 27th to August 5th

Hours are from 12pm to 10am and will remain kid friendly for the duration of the show.

Call 312-961-7219 or email theinsectasylum@gmail.com with any questions.

This event will include:

Artistic displays featuring anywhere between 2,000 – 2,650 taxidermy insects from our collection.


Live Reptile and Arachnid Showing

Get a closer look at exotic pets and have a Q&A with their owners.

Cost: Donations are welcome
Time: 1pm–2pm
Date: July 27 and Aug 4
Age: All Ages to view, 6+ to touch animals, 2–6 with parent to touch animals

Bring your family to meet ours! Friends of The Insect Asylum will be bringing in their pet snakes and spiders for an up close and personal Q&A. You can learn all about caring for these awesome creatures, ask questions about them and their habitat, and maybe even touch one if you’re lucky!

Live Photo Shoot

Experience the magic of macro-photography right in front of your eyes.

Cost: $15 Donations to the photographer are welcome
Time: 3pm–4pm
Date: July 27
Age: All Ages

Learn how the pros do it! A professional model will pose you with our insects to create a unique, keepsake photograph. Our photographer will use his macro lens to reveal every delicate detail. Guests are encouraged to dress up and do their hair and makeup however they wish. The theme is children of the earth so flowing outfits, bare feet, and flower crowns are totally acceptable!

Stella Luna’s wishful watering hole

Come and place a pebble with a promise of good intentions for mother earth.

Cost: Donations are welcome
Time: Duration of event
Date: July 27–Aug 5
Age: All Ages

This live, interactive art installation invites guests to make a promise to mother earth on a beautiful stone and place it into our enchanted garden for all to see. Featuring our lunar ladies and their friend Jane Doe.


Design your own Rhopalocera, and let your creative side out!

Cost: Donations are welcome
Date: July 27–Aug 5
Age: 2+

Come make your very own watercolor butterfly in this fun art activity for all ages. We use coffee filters, pipe cleaners, watercolor markers, and some good old fashioned science to make some beautiful art that guests can take back home with them.

Worm Dig

It’s a wriggly treasure hunt!

Cost: Donations are welcome
Date: July 27–Aug 5
Age: 2+

Come search for worms in our awesome compost/sandbox. Look out for the neon green ones; those are the winners! All worms found will be used in our composting class.

Build your own worm farm (Composting 101)

Help the earth, and learn how easy it is to set up your own red worm composting.

Cost: Donation
Date: July 27–Aug 5
Age: 9+ or 5–9 with adult

Come take our 30 min vermicomposting class following our worm dig! Guests will leave with their own worm farm to take home. The class includes information about red worm composing, worms, compost starters, egg carton homes, and the satisfaction that you are doing something awesome for our planet!

Butterfly Pinning

Create your very own pinned butterfly specimens.

Cost: $10
Time: 2:15pm–3pm
Date: July 27–Aug 5
Age: 9+ or 6–9 with adult

Learn the delicate process of pinning and preserving one of the most admired insects. Students will pick their own specimen from our pre-hydrated butterfly chamber. You will be able to take your project home at the end of the class.

Owl Pellet Dissection

Learn about an owl’s prey by examining their remains.

Cost: $10-15
Date: July 28, July 31, and Aug 5
Age: 9+ or 5+ with adult

Get ready because this class is a HOOT! You will be given a sterilized owl pellet to dissect. With the tools of the trade, a helper to guide you through your journey, and a bone chart you will discover what creatures your bird had for supper. This is a slow, meticulous process that is exciting and rewarding. Every bit of fur you remove reveals more bones and answers about the owl’s habits. All pellets have been heat-treated to remove bacteria, and we will ensure that we’re practicing safe dissection.

Let’s see how many skulls you can find. One of our students was able to uncover five in one pellet! WOW!!!

Magnify Your Life

A close-up view and scientific explanation of our specimens.

Cost: Donations are welcome
Date: July 27, July 28, Aug 4, and Aug 5
Age: 5+

View our breathtaking specimens using high-end technology courtesy of our in-house chemist. Our specimens range in age from the mid 1940s to the present. During this class, we will explain what type of specimen you’re viewing, the importance of scientific research, and cataloging, while enjoying the beauty that nature has to offer. You also have the opportunity to take your own macro pictures! We will email you your photos, and your five best shots will be printed to make a 1” button to take home.

50/50 Contest

Do you like your odds?

Cost: $5 Buy In
Time: Duration of event
Date: July 27–Aug 5
Age: All Ages

Guess how many dead bugs are on display to win 50% of the pot! You can buy in multiple times to increase your odds. The number closest to the total will wins!

If you will not be at the event, you can PayPal or Zelle us your guess – paypal.me/theinsectasylum  or our Zelle (chase quick pay) is Theinsectasylum@gmail.com.

Please be sure to send us your contact info and email so we can send you a receipt for your entry!

Get Buzzed!!!—Literally!

See the amazing work these tattoo artists can do.

Cost: Vary By size
Time: by appoint and some walk ins avalible
Date: July 27–Aug 5
Temporary Tattoos: 3+ with adult

Real Tattoos: 18+ with valid drivers license or state issued ID. NO EXCEPTIONS.

The artists of Ars Memoria tattoo studio have created quite a buzz tattooing all day long. They have put together some amazing insect-inspired flash sheets, and we also have some custom-made temporary tattoos for the kiddos. Start your own insect collection; get one, or collect them all!

Here’s a sample of our temporary tattoos!


Book your appointment or walk in during our event for one of these sweet Tats! Art by Max Komarov:


Our Bug Bar:

Just Ice will be providing us the chills for the night!

Industry Juices will be providing us with fresh cold pressed nutrition!

Prints featuring insects from our collection by our amazing photographers Ryan Brandoff and Simon Rubinstein.

T-shirts, tote bags, temporary tattoos, and prints featuring designs inspired by our collection from our amazing artists Helena Barber, Jason Fandel, and Danesh Kothari.

Raffles, Prizes, and SO MUCH MORE!!

We are happy to announce that Natures Little Recyclers and The Urban Canopy’s Compost Club will be joining us opening weekend to help discuss the importance of composting!


George Street photography has gifted us a Free engagement wedding session to raffle off!