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Ishka Lha's art reveals a world of the eternal Beauty that is all things. A river of elementals, cosmic beings, and magical beasts swirl together in one great flood of light and shadow, emanating the shapes and colors illuminated within the Beloved’s kaleidoscope. With every turning of the wheel, an ever-changing cycle of Life appears. Dawn spills into the night sky, a blossom falls as a cherry grows; and the movement in our mind trickles down into a land where thoughts kneel before a pool of peaceful waters, watching silently, as Spirit emerges from the depths.
Ishka Lha (pronounced Ee-shka Lha) was born in 1982, and grew up on a ranch atop the rolling hills of northern California, where the quiet natural beauty of her childhood surroundings inspired endless imaginative play and creativity. She earned a professional B.A. for Architecture with an emphasis on natural building and eco-village design at California Polytechnic State University, but she promptly set her course for the exploration and creation of healing art upon graduation. Ishka is part of a growing visionary art movement that is dedicated to the happiness of all beings, and approaches her creative process as a spiritual practice. Her art explores and celebrates the natural radiance inherent in all dimensions of life through the use of neo-traditional iconography and mythology, and she is especially interested in what universal archetypes have most helpfully governed humankind's passage through time into greater avenues of mutual respect, understanding, and heartfelt livelihood. Her work is primarily featured in private collections, galleries, boutiques, and transformational art and music festivals throughout the U.S. and abroad.
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What's in a Name?
My birth name is Jessica, but I discovered myself as Ishka Lha when I was 21, after a sort of lifelong journey to find my true name. From a really young age, I didn't feel quite settled with the name my parents had given me. It was such a popular one when I was born; and even though I grew up in a tiny town out in the country, I was surrounded by a handful of other Jessicas. I craved something more unique...
But even deeper still, Jessica just didn't seem to fit me somehow. Since I was a child, I often imagined myself in faraway lands in another time, speaking in different tongues, playing out faint recollections from other lifetimes. And Jessica did not exist there. Growing up, I played with exotic pseudonyms like Jasmine and Kasmira, which I used for signing off on journal entries and letters to friends. I also tried spelling Jessica every which way (Jessyka, Jesica, JAHseeka, Jahsheikha, etc.) over the years before I finally discovered the real deal.
My soul's true name finally arrived one evening in the fall of 2005, after a majorly pivotal turning point in my adult life. I felt I was ready to change my name for good this time, so I did a search for the etymology of Jessica. Even though I wanted to change my name, I hoped I could find a new one that was still somehow connected to the one my parents had given me, to honor their inherent wisdom, and because I believe in the power of one's birth name to help shape one's destiny, just as much as one's chosen name might.
Lo and behold, I found Iscah (pronounced the same as Ishka), which is the name that Jessica comes from-- it's the Hebrew root, which loosely translates to "she will see" (Jessica similarly translates to "the Lord sees"). The moment I saw it, I was hooked. My true name was there all along, I just needed to trace its origins! I changed my name right there and then, but made up my own spelling, and haven't looked back. I have since discovered that Ishka is found in several different languages, with many different spellings: In Irish Gaelic, which is part of my ancestry, Uisce (pronounced the same as Ishka) means water. In Arabic, Ishq'a (pronounced like Ishka) is "spiritual love". In Russian, Ishka is a diminutive that is added to the end of a word to make it cute or small, as a term of endearment. And I've been told that in Lakota, Ishkya (not sure of the spelling) means "moon glow", or, more specifically "that which the wolves howl at". There are more variations of my name in other languages, too, and I continue to learn about my soul name to this day.
Shortly after I took on Ishka, I added the "Lha" as the second part of my name for a few reasons. One, I absolutely love the Sufi universal songs and dances for peace, as well as their great mystic poets, Rumi and Hafiz. Their mantra "Ishq'allah mabud lela" (God is love, lover, and beloved) has been one of my lifelong meditations of the heart. I also wanted my name to be a reminder of another practice which I hold dear: Singing! I chose L(h)a so that every time someone calls my name, I remember my song as a part of myself. I landed on the Tibetan spelling for Lha because Tibetan Buddhism has deeply influenced my world view, and it is the Tibetan word for the tippy tops of the mountains, where the atmosphere for inspiration is beyond measure.
Over the years, my business name has landed on "The Art of Ishka Lha", which translates to The Art of Spiritual Love (if you attribute the Arabic translation). I've resonated most strongly with this translation as a whole because the art I create is very much out of my spiritual love, in all its many forms, and I am most passionate about creating art from this perspective.
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Ishka Lha wants you to be happy with your art, and we understand how sometimes things can turn out a little differently than you expected. If for some reason you are dissatisfied with your purchase, please contact us within 3 days of receiving your order. All returns and exchanges are handled on a case by case basis. Once approved, you must ship the undamaged item back within 5 days to exchange it for another item or to receive a full refund. Did your art arrive damaged? Please keep and document all packaging, and contact us for further instructions to replace your order items. Any Ishka Lha original will be shipped via UPS and insured for full cost. If item is damaged in shipping, please contact Ishka immediately with photos of the damaged art and packaging. A partial or full refund is contingent upon the insurance claim decision made by the mail carrier.
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All giclée prints are made with archival inks on fine art papers using a high-resolution large format inkjet printer at a certified green business facility. All original paintings are created using only professional grade Golden Acrylics. All other art products are created with the highest quality in mind, as well as keeping production as local and green friendly as possible.
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