Abstract artwork by Helen Blejerman
Podcast, 17 mins

Who Lies Beneath

An audio experience

Wadsley Church cemetery in north Sheffield is home to a mass grave: 2,500 people who died at the nearby mental asylum between 1872 and 1948. A small plaque, erected in 2012, is the only evidence of this tragic, hidden history.

Earlier this year, Mexican-British artist Helen Blejerman created a series of artworks, ‘A Visual Theory of the Soul’, based on the living flora of the churchyard and in memory of the 2,500 unnamed ‘pauper souls’ buried there. In this audio experience, Helen takes the drawings as the starting point for an exploration of life, death, nature and memory.

Combining poetry and sensory invitation, Helen introduces you to Dr Julia Banwell’s research on death and visual cultures and invites you to experience a renewed connection with your surroundings.

Content warning: includes references to death and grief that some listeners may find triggering.



  • Dr Julia Banwell, School of Languages and Culture

The Podcast

See also