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A stencil artwork depicting an Afghani woman in a burqa on a banknote
Photograph: Luke Cornish | AFN, 2021, Luke Cornish

Grab a limited edition print by Archibald finalist Luke Cornish to support Afghan women

100 per cent of all profits raised will be donated to Sydney-based NGO Mahboba’s Promise

Written by
Stephen A Russell

Archibald Prize finalist Luke Cornish – aka celebrated stencil artist E.L.K. – has created a striking limited edition print to raise funds for Mahboba’s Promise, a Sydney-based NGO that is dedicated to supporting disadvantaged women and children in Afghanistan. This creative approach is a really simple way you can get involved with helping those affected by the situation currently unfolding there. 

The image, titled ‘AFN’, depicts an Afghan woman wearing a Burka on a banknote (AFN is the abbreviation for Afghan afghani, the official currency of Afghanistan). It was part of an exhibition of Cornish’s work, Don’t shoot the messenger, that was shown earlier this year. He has teamed up with Art Aid Australia, an art market specifically created to help raise funds for causes including LGBTQIA+ rights, and tackling issues like mental health stigma and racism head-on.

Normally, a percentage of the sale of each limited edition print is donated to a cause of the artists’ choice. Given how dire the situation is in Afghanistan, in this instance, 100 per cent of all profits will go to Mahboba’s Promise. The work will go on sale at 7pm on Tuesday, August 24. You'll be able to secure a print here

Don’t shoot the messenger featured a series of banknotes from different countries around the world, each stencilled with different imagery that explored the conflict and inequality faced by the population of the selected countries,” Cornish says. “This piece seeks to highlight the oppression of women under the strict Islamic law of Taliban rule, an issue that, sadly, is no longer a thing of the past.”

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