Today I learnt of the passing of Juliana Yasin...an incredible woman, an amazing artist, and a generous compassinate, caring and mindful soul. Working with her was a gift for which I will be eternally grateful. After being diagnosed with stage three cervical cancer in 2007 Julianna fought her condition into remission and during her battle became even more devoted in her Islamic Faith. She was pure & true but wasn't afraid to make work that critiqued and challenged stereotypes and prejudices. As Noor Effendy Ibrahim (Artist and The Substation artistic director) said:
“I’ve known Juliana since the ‘90s with The Artists Village, doing performance art… And she was one of the early voices of Malay women contemporary artists in Singapore. Back in the early 2000s, Teater Ekamatra had a festival at the Substation and we invited Juliana. She did a piece on the issue of the hijab and tudung. Her works were quiet and elegant, but at the same time, a strong critique of many things.”
Looking at her Pinterest pins today I was drawn to a quote she had on a poster "Confidence is Silence...Insecurity is Loud"...Juliana was the embodiment of this personally and artistically. Juliana was only 44 years old...the same age as me...yet in her presence - her youthful laughter and energy (belied by a sage like wisdom and inner peace) I was reminded that maturity has nothing to do with age.
Dear Juliana, Richelle gave me the news today...I spent a lot of time reflecting about just how much you gave to the world and the abundance of joy and wisdom....the opportunities for healing & learning that you gifted through your creative spirit. I've had footage of our Exist gig sitting on my laptop for nearly six years and never looked at it...what we do just doesn't translate usually and given it's all about what happens in the moment - the experience ...but I watched it tonight...I sat in the bath and watched it all...unedited ...raw...real...and I cried...I cried and cried and cried...not tears of loss or sorrow...but tears of joy Jules...joy and love & gratitude...a new appreciation for just how important it is to do what we do...and just how significant that work was for me and what your actions contributed to where I am right now. Tonight...watching and weeping...you fanned my flame and reaffirmed why I'm here and all the souls who have conspired on the journey...to thank you would be to diminish the profoundness of the way you touched our lives and the gifts you gave us. Fly your kites in Paradise sister...Al Fateha