Autistic teen artist behind Merdeka artwork selected by Dr M predicted fame, says mum

Jamila and her mother Noorhashimah being interviewed in front of the Putrajaya signage. – Pix courtesy of Artjamila
Jamila and her mother Noorhashimah being interviewed in front of the Putrajaya signage. – Pix courtesy of Artjamila

PETALING JAYA, Aug 28 — An autistic teen artist at the center of media attention for her joyful artworks, predicted she would be popular.

According to Noorhashimah Mohamed Noordin, 58, her daughter Wan Jamila Wan Shaiful Bahri had told her to “take pictures all the time” – predicting her future fame.

“Three years ago when we started doing exhibitions, she told me that she would be popular – true enough, she is now.

“She also told me what will happen in the future. She can see the future. She can see what we cannot see,” said the mother of her 17-year-old from Shah Alam, adding that it was another unique talent of Jamila’s.

She said that her daughter, known professionally as Artjamila, had predicted many incidents before – but did not elaborate.

Workers at Putrajaya installing Jamila’s artwork.
Workers at Putrajaya installing Jamila’s artwork.

Noorhashimah discovered Jamila could sketch when she was just four years old – using it as a medium to communicate.

Jamila’s most recent most recent work grabbing attention is her spirit of Merdeka painting that drapes the Putrajaya signage, selected by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad himself for the upcoming National Day celebration.

Noorhashimah told Malay Mail she and her daughter intend to attend the 2019 National Day parade this Saturday.



“She loves the Merdeka celebrations. It will be good for Jamila.”

Apart from the painting boasting a myriad of Malaysian imagery from bridges to the many ethnicities who call Malaysia home, Jamila was commissioned to create a mural for the Genius Kurnia Centre in Kuala Lumpur.

Last year, a Switzerland-based organisation commissioned several paintings from the young talent.

Fans of Jamila can catch her at next month’s Art Includes 2019 festival where she will be exhibiting her artworks.

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