Louise Cutajar is a bonafide culture phile. She has a Masters in Museum Studies and has organised Cultural Events and Exhibitions all over the World from Malta and Gozo to London, Tokyo, Dubai and Doha, Qatar. She’s a trained Paintings Conservator and has spoken up in front of the UN to support a world heritage site.
Louise has recently left the position of Director of Events and Partnerships for Qatar Museums in Doha. Since returning to Malta, she is busy restoring paintings for private clients, she is working on an exciting Event Management workshop, and also finding the time to work on a cultural website.
What drives you to do what you do?
My passion to be creative. Support from friends and loved ones. Love drives me.
What or who inspires you?
So many things! Nature, travel, people, colour, art, positivity… I am very inspired by different cultures. I have traveled extensively and honestly believe my biggest inspiration comes from people I have met in the most unusual circumstances. Also, those who have strived to have a better life and succeeded just through sheer determination despite the obstacles. That is an inspiration to me.
What keeps you sane?
My family, my friends, and always believing that even though there are dark moments the sun will always shine again.
What are you most proud of?
From a personal perspective it is being a great, fun daughter, aunt and godmother. I always try to be there for my family and friends when needed as they are for me. From a professional perspective, organising the Peoples Forum for all the NGOS during CHOGM, speaking in front of the United Nations supporting a World Heritage site which eventually became a resolution and organising so many wonderful events and exhibitions.
What has been one of your biggest lessons so far?
I organised an Opera on the Water. It was Madame Butterfly. The costs were much higher than budgeted and it looked like we were seriously going to be in the red until the last minute an unexpected sponsor jumped in and saved the day. I learnt a big lesson that day not to run before I can walk.
What advice would you give your younger self?
You are your own boss. Respect gains respect and chill and smell the roses, it will all work out.
What’s your tip for life-work balance?
Dedicate as much time to work as to play as to family as to spirituality. Life is like a pie and each piece should be the same size to reach and find equilibrium.
What general advice would you give to a woman who wants to start her own business?
Believe in yourself and you will be believed. Work hard and you will be noticed. Speak your mind and you will be answered. If you don’t like something then change it and if you can’t change it accept it and change your attitude.
What book changed your life in some way?
The subject is serious, as it is about how a young Neurosurgeon is diagnosed with cancer at age 36 and his life is destined to take one path, and how that changes. I find the book inspiring because, despite the pain and suffering, somehow his attitude toward death, makes his life and relationships more meaningful by accepting his fate and coming face to face with his mortality. It is the line between life and death. It is about accepting the inevitable but living life to the full with the people who mean the most to us. It is a very powerful book with a strong message.
‘Respect’ by Aretha Franklin. The word says it all. The music just compliments it.
The Takeaway. Be inspired by Louise’s vigilance and attentive devotion to art and culture. Champion her and celebrate the lesson’s learned travelling the world.