Sh-ken-ta by Yuhana Nashmi

3 Jun 2018 - 17 Jun 2018 

As part of Public Programing for The 65th Blake Prize, artist Yuhana Nashmi creates Sh-ken-ta, a reed and clay installation inspired by Mandaean Mesopotamian heritage and religious practices in the Casula Powerhouse grounds.

This art installation explores the four elements of life (earth, water, fire and air) with the concept of soul resurrection as per the Mandaean mythology inherited from the Sumerians. This artwork symbolises the human body (mud=flesh, bamboos=bones, reeds=nerves) and also symbolises earth as a home of the soul as the body. Only three shkenta remain in the world and as such the practice is endangered. Materially this work included red clay from local construction sites, locally cultivated bamboos, and tree trunks from local vegetation as well as human hair from local hairdressers in Liverpool.