Julieta dos Reis Mesquita

Julieta teaching traditional basket making
Julieta teaching traditional basket making in East Timorese style at North Richmond Community Health Centre, 1999.
Image: Carmelita Gomes
Source: Julieta Mesquita

I come from Bucoli in Timor Leste. I left my country of birth with my husband and seven children in 1975 to seek refuge in Portugal, where we lived for 20 years. Life was difficult.

In Melbourne I enjoy life and contribute to community projects. I have taught girls traditional dances and hand drumbeats performed by women. I have also taught traditional textiles and basket weaving, such as for those used in the rituals of Se Matebian.

I went back to visit my homeland in 2005 and found it very different from my childhood memories. Here I celebrate Loron Matebian with my family at our local Catholic church. After Mass we have dinner, followed by rosary prayers to our ancestors.

Image Gallery

Julieta with handmade baskets Weaving a tais