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Malaika has come to mean finding a complex and magical system of self-love from within oneself to me.
— Maria

About MARIA BAUMANN

I am an illustrator living and working in central Johannesburg, South Africa. My mother taught me to draw very young. I have always been an introvert and preferred the fantastical to the real. I completed my Masters in Fine Arts at the University of Stellenbosch. Since then I have been in the incredibly lucky position to focus entirely on my passion.

When Swaady and I started talking about this book, I worried about being the wrong person to bring it to life, belonging to no organised religion. Swaady emphasized that the stories were not specifically for the religious. I have been working on these drawings while addressing a long standing problem with pelvic pain. It is very significant that Malaika has been by my side during this process.