In Loving Memory of Purple Malik

Ishita Chaudhury

28 November 2009 (edited in later years)

With the deepest of grief, we share with you the loss of someone who brought immense life, joy and colour to our core at The YP Foundation.

We lost Purple Malik on November 28, 2009, after a brief and highly unexpected struggle with Blood Cancer. Purple came to us in 2007 as a young college student and journalist, and we have known her in multiple roles since, as a friend, graphic designer, events curator, staff member, and colleague.

We are at a loss at what to say, other than the fact that her voice and her art are still etched so clearly in front of us, when we look at the voice she gave our work in her digital story, her art work, two years worth of 4am online conversations on everything from poster designs to sound to our future dreams. She always took us to new heights with her trademark intense hard work and easygoing nature, becoming a part of each of us in different ways.

I last spoke with Purple a few days ago before she left us. She was taking some time off to heal and take care of herself, and mentioned to me that in the preceding few months that had been hard and challenging for her, coming to TYPF to all of us kept her going and had helped her cope. “It’s been my happy space” are words that still resound in my mind. I feel that somewhere, she would have wanted everyone at TYPF to know that.

We knew and love Purple for her wild eccentricities, her brilliantly curious mind, her vision of the world, her sense of humour, her individualistic sense of dressing, the strikingly talented artist she was and her poetic heart. Some of my most life changing conversations and arguments in art and on life have been with Purple, at early morning hours of working together (which was almost every second day for weeks on end during that time). She taught me how to see life a little differently, a second vision that we found in her art and in her hopes and dreams for what she wanted to do.

We cannot imagine not having her with us anymore. She is so many things for so many people, and this institution owes her so very much. We wish that she finds peace and knows how much she is loved, and how much we owe her, for how she brought us together and the laughter and light she brought to this organization.

A prayer meeting for her was held in December 2009 and we dedicated our fundraiser ‘Raising Decibel Levels’ to her talent and genius as an artist and a human being, where we exhibited her artwork and a digital story she had put together in 2008 with the Global Fund for Children. She was in the first few stages of designing our first institutional brochure when she passed away and it was a project that we had been working on for many weeks, she was incredibly excited about it.

We celebrate and miss her; she will always be the most beautiful part of us.