EXHIBITION: WOMEN IN MALTA – Helga Ellul

Location:Casa Rocca Piccola

Helga Ellul – Director of ADVISE LTD, former CEO of Playmobil for over 30 years.

Helga was the first of the 15 women I met. She responded to my invitation in a few days and we were soon corresponding, and set a date for our meeting very quickly.

I couldn’t believe that Helga Ellul was coming to my studio. I told everyone about it.

I talked to people about Helga, people who knew about her heard that I invited her for the project, they told me, “oh yes, Helga is a lovely person.”

She is known as a first business woman in Malta. She was the CEO of Playmobil for 30 years. Back in those days there weren’t many women running a company like her.

As our experience in life, if you do something unusual, you get criticised. So I asked her some questions about being a CEO, a business women in those days. She told me that back in those days, there were some people who thought she was a super woman who knew everything. To clarify that impression, she had parties at home and invited all the neighbours to join. As people got to know her better, they found her to be like every other mum who loves to talk about their children.

Back in those days she was a flower power girl. She wanted to be an artist. Then she was lucky to find someone to help her in early life, and they sent her to Malta for the job in Playmobil.

What interests me the most is her faith in people. She is very open to communication to anyone. Even sometimes the cooperation doesn’t work out, together she would still try to find a way out for each other. “Forgive and give chances.” She said. “If you believe that people are good, then they will be good.”

Q&A

1)When you feel down, what you usually do to make yourself feel better? How do you deal with stress?

I love sports, cooking and painting. These are the things I do for stress relief. When sporting, I take it easy, I don’t mind if I lose the game.

2)What you enjoy the most about your work?

People.

3)Have you been professionally photographed before? How did you feel? (Before the shoot with Amanda)

Yes, I have. I didn’t like it.

4)If you knew then what you know now, what would you tell your 18-year-old self?

Whatever you do, you have to love doing it, ultimately love it. Also you must be educated and trained, study it properly.

5)When things get tough, how do you keep yourself going?

I have a lot of support from my husband. My husband is a very confident person. I was a shy girl, he gave me a lot of confidence and support. Sometimes I felt more alone rather than stressful. I have very good friends I can talk to. But most of the time I reason with myself and find solutions.

6) How do you define success?

For me success is when I can make a contribution to people, not being wasted. I love people and I have strong belief in people.

Helga now has her own consulting company. Giving people advice regarding business.

Women in Malta Official trailer:https://youtu.be/hlhe5zv7KOQ

The Making of “Women in Malta” 2015 Video:https://youtu.be/jvSr8Xpt3K0

Women in Malta 2015 Project page

Exhibition: Women in Malta – Joan Abela

Location:Casa Rocca Piccola

Joan Abela – Historian

Joan is the chairperson of the Steering Committee for the Rehabilitation of the Notarial Archives and the President of the Notarial Archives Resources Council. She has a cheerful voice when she talks and from her her eye shadow and her outfit I can see that she loves bright colours.

When a person loves what she/he does, they can always talk about it all the time and all day long.

When I just started to ask her questions about her work, she told me, ” I can talk about it all day.”

The week I would like to set a meeting with her she was happened had to go to Greece for a conference. She told me she likes to go to conferences abroad to meet people from different countries, show them Maltese archive discoveries, give a presentation and to know where Maltese archive stand among all the countries.

Then I ask, after all those conference she has been to, where does Maltese archive stand? “Exceptional! In archive, we are very lucky to have so much archive.” She answered proudly.

Then she said wanted to tell me something which really amazed me.

She started as a matured student in the university. She got the master degrees of history in her 40s, after 3 years she got her Ph.D degrees, one from Malta, one from Exeter in England.

The funny thing is she was a stay at home mum and also helping her husband’s business. After her children grew up, she decided to take up a hobby. She was always interested in history and wanted to learn more so she started to study history in university as hobby.

Who go to university for hobby? I didn’t. It was more about getting the degree. So she sounds pretty amazing to me.

She is a maritime historian, archivist, housewife and mother.

Family play a large part of her life. She is a mother of 3 children. They are all accountants, just like their Dad. She particular mentioned that she never put pressure on her children. She said, ” I do everything for my children. Looking after my children gives me a lot of comfort. If my children are not happy about what I do, I wouldn’t be able to do what I want. In fact, they give me a lot of support. ” She wanted her children to have good childhood so she spent most her time with them when they were still young, only went to university when she was in her early 40s.

She refused twice scholarship for studying Ph.D in England. It’s only because she didn’t want to leave her children and family. When the university of Exeter offer her the third time of the scholarship, they gave her everything she need so she didn’t have to go to England to study, she could stay in Malta and travel to England when it was needed.

It showed that the university of Exeter, they really wanted Joan to take up the Scholarship so they wouldn’t give up offering her again and again.

Q& A
1)When you feel down, what you usually do to make

yourself feel better? How do you deal with stress?

I try to be positive and think of my achievements and just how lucky I am to have such a wonderful family and such amazing friends who support me. When I am really stressed out I try to organize myself as much as possible and allow some time to go for walks or do other things that are not connected to research and writing.

2)What you enjoy the most about your work?

I try to juggle between several different jobs in one day, all of which require time and attention. I like having this variety in my life since the experience gained from one job can be used to the benefit of another job and this makes a person more capable of managing particular situations. A typical day in my life could easily be divided be- tween lecturing at University, assisting researchers at the Notarial Archives, solving administrative problems at my husband’s office, doing a feature for the media or try- ing to get sponsorships for restoration work on notarial manuscripts. Obviously with three children there are also a lot of house chores, shopping and cooking to be done and which cannot wait till you feel like doing them. However, I do all my work with love and passion and that’s what gives me strenght and keeps me going.

3)Have you been professionally photographed before? How did you feel? (Before the shoot with Amanda)

Yes, I have been photographed for features being published with respect to the No- tarial Archives. However I have never been professionally photographed with me be- ing the main subject.
4)If you knew then what you know now, what would you tell your

18-year-old self?

Well, it is difficult to look at life with hindsight since there are so many mistakes or situations that we would have liked to avoid or else feel that we could have acted differently. I am a person who strong- ly believes that if one learns from his or her mistakes these are ultimatley beneficial in moulding a person’s character and in preparing him or her for more difficult situations in life. At 18 I had stopped studying and started work. I always wanted to have a family and did not think much of a career at the time, this could also be due to the social and economic conditions prevalent at the time. The fact that I continued my studies much later in life as a mature student opened up new horizons and opportunities for me. My initial contact with the Notarial Archives was through my research and believe me it was a cultural shock to see historic documents dumped in dirt. However, instead of grumbling, together with my friend Francesca Balzan, I tried to do something and today the Archives are one of the most con- sulted collections on the island and also boast of having Dr Theresa Zammit Lupi, who is the top book and paper conservator in Malta. I think I would be hesitant to give myself some sort of advice since I truly believe that what I am today is the fruit of all past experience, good and bad.

5)When things get tough, how do you keep yourself going?

Much like when I feel stressed (see my answer to question 1).

6) How do you define success?

For me success is when I do a good deed, when I make someone happy, when I save a precious object, when I am having quality time with my loved ones or with my friends. Success is realizing what matters most in life, that is, good health and be- ing content with what you have.Success is not hesitating to change the world against all odds and making it a better place even if this means personal sacrifice. It dosen’t matter whether you succeed or not, what matters is that you try to do your best.

She is 13 years in the archive. It was very difficult to access the archive. It opened only once a week and you have to make an appointment. Now they are open daily, it is considered one of her success.

At the moment she is giving lecture in the university, the subject is about the faculty of laws, legal history and methodology.

Women in Malta Official trailer:https://youtu.be/hlhe5zv7KOQ

The Making of “Women in Malta” 2015 Video:https://youtu.be/jvSr8Xpt3K0

Women in Malta 2015 Project page

Exhibition: Women in Malta – Laurie Pace

Location:Teatru Manoel

Laurie Pace – Olympian, former Judoka

I met Laurie on a Saturday morning at the National Museum.

I was sitting by the sea with a cup of cappuccino. I was early.

It was very beautiful late autumn weather, the sunlight, cloud, and the colour of the sea just wonderful. Unfortunately there was a tourist blocking my view. He stayed in the same spot taking photos or videos for about 15 minutes, I wanted to take a nice photo to upload to my Instagram.

Just as I was trying to upload the photo from my phone, a voice said, “Are you Amanda?”

“Yes, I am. Hi Laurie!” I was happy to see her. She was dressed in a leather jacket and holding a helmet in her hand. She looked cool, I thought.

“Did you come with a bike?” I asked.

“Yes.” She nodded, running her fingers through her short hair, trying to adjust her hairstyle.

I used to ride a scooter every day when I was living in Taiwan, I understand how a helmet can ruin a hairstyle.

Soon we started to talk about the project, what the photo shoot was going to be, and also a little about life. I often go off the topic when talking to the 15 women. I am always interested in people’s life and their experience.

I found that when we talked about life, the emotion and the expression changes. That gives me an idea of their personality, even in a brief conversation. I hope that beside taking beautiful photographs of them I can also capture the personality. And I think that’s the difficult part in portrait photography.

When Laurie was talking about her travelllng plans her eyes lit up. She hopes to go to Cuba for trekking or to visit Canada again. She is Maltese, but was born in Canada.

Her experience with competing was extraordinary. She is the kind of person who has to have very good self-discipline.   

“The most difficult part about training was the diet.”

I think she manages it very well as she looks in good shape.

Later, I started to think about how to style her. She would like to look feminine with her short hair. I think it’s not a problem at all, an easy task. I like the idea that women can be so changeable and have different looks and styles. All the 15 women are so different and Laurie definitely would be an interesting one to photograph.

I’m truly grateful to these 15 women who took the time to meet me and tell me a bit of their life. I like to know a bit about them, as I need inspiration for the images I want to create, and the 15 ladies certainly gave me inspiration.

Q& A

1)When you feel down, what do you usually do to make yourself feel better? How do you deal with stress?

I train to deal with stress and pressure…. After training all is well.

2)What do you enjoy the most about your work?

The finished product and the satisfaction on peoples faces after my job is well done.

3)Have you been professionally photographed before? How did you feel? (Before the shoot with Amanda)

I only had one photoshoot before, but with Amanda I was very relaxed and she put me through each photo step by step which made it so nice to be photographed. I like the way she works and she is so dedicated and patient.

4)If you knew then what you know now, what would you tell your 18-year-old self?
I would tell her go out there and do exactly what I did in life :)

5)When things get tough, how do you keep yourself going?

Determination and perseverance is a gift I have, that has helped me get up mountains in life. Sometimes you do find obstacles and hard times, but you have to believe in yourself, be positive in everything you do and believe in the good of life to get you through the tough times .

6) How do you define success?

Success is achieving your goals and being happy getting there. Be who you want to be and have dreams, as from dreams reality can evolve.

Links about Laurie:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laurie_Pace

https://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20070529/sport/laurie-pace-wins-gold-medal-in-five-seconds.16253

Women in Malta Official trailer:https://youtu.be/hlhe5zv7KOQ

The Making of “Women in Malta” 2015 Video:https://youtu.be/jvSr8Xpt3K0

Women in Malta 2015 Project page

Exhibition: Women in Malta – Sandra Mifsud

Location:Teatru Manoel

Sandra Mifsud – Dancer, Educator

Sandra came into my studio wearing a t-shirt and comfy soft shoes, with the natural slim figure of a dancer.

She gave me a beautiful smile as she walked in.  She talks in a very soft tone and never in a hurry.

I asked what she thought about the project.  She said “It’s interesting, not just the old fashioned thinking of women, it’s about women having brains”.

She didn’t ask me much about the project. She said “I will trust you blindly.” It’s really flattering as I have only met her once before, and am almost a total stranger to her. I’m grateful for the trust and support these 15 women are giving me.

At the moment she is working on various projects. She seemed quiet and calm when she sat down and talked to me. But after we talked for a short while, I found that she is a very active person, she always has more then one project and things going on.

She told me something interesting about her life. She said she always has a few projects going on at the same time, so that if one of them is not working, she can work on another. Then the good things that happen in one project can bring good energy to the non-working project and keep it going.

She said, that for her, it has advantages and disadvantages to always do a few projects at the same time. The good thing is that she doesn’t put all her eggs in one basket, the downside could be that when she hopes to be more focused on one project she wouldn’t be able to do that.

It’s her personality that makes her who she is today.

In 2010 she decided to become a full-time freelance dancer. It’s not an easy journey but she wants to do the things she really loves and dedicate herself to them.

I asked her, has she ever thought about going back to be an employee again, she said never. I guessed it, and that would be my answer to the question as well.

At the moment she has a few projects, like the National Dance Company “2FINMALTA DANCE ENSEMBLE”, which she is setting up. For the opening doors ASSOCIATION Malta (www.openingdoorsmalta.org) she is working on a project for people with disability. She is also giving lectures in the University of Malta in the dance studies department, she teaches about Technology and Interdisciplinary Performance. It’s more about the collaboration with other people, not just the performance and dance. Dance is a collaboration, team work, knowing how to interact and respect people is sometimes more important than how good you are in the art of performance. She has a background in business studies, and that has certainly given her a wide range of experience working with people, and contributes to her art work.

I saw some photos when she was giving a dance performance in Wales. (It was in July 2014, at the Swansea National Waterfront Museum in Wales, UK as part of a festival called Dance Days, organised by the Taliesin Arts Centre) what caught me was not only the freeze moment of her beautiful dance and expression, but also the expression from the the audience. They were really into the show and immersed in it. It makes me want to see more and know more about the dance. “Do you have a video of the performance? I would love to see it.” I asked.

It surprised me to hear that she actually enjoys it more when working with people who have no, or little experience with dance. She said, “ You can work with the natural movement of their personality. You can use game to bring out the movement, give them inspiration to let them use their natural movement. When they start to trust you, you win them over, then you can start to correct and direct them. “ It sounds great, just the way I would like to be taught. There are many people out there who are very shy about moving their bodies and getting onto the dance floor. It’s to do a lot with not having enough confidence about dancing. If a person could guide me and be patient with me like that, I think I could probably do anything.

She has been doing a very interesting performance. Sandra and her partner were performing in “Science in the city” in Valletta and “Dance Days” in Welis and in “Ziquzasq”, for which she did the choreography. For “Science in the City” and the “Dance Days”, their performance is about merging the performance with the audience. The audience could cross between them, get very close and also interact with the dance. It’s a space they have to be very creative with to cope with all kinds of situations the audience put them in, they can cross over the space as they dance, there is no stage, it’s like a spontaneous dance, but well organized.

She said that after she got the Masters degree of dance she gained much more confidence, and she feels she can take on a lot more different projects without worrying about whether she can do it.

Q& A

1)When you feel down, what do you usually do to make yourself feel better? How do you deal with stress?

I usually go for a walk with my dogs, or spend time with my pets at home. I have 2 dogs and 2 cats. They count as my closest network of best friends. Just one look at their cute and innocent nature and my heart and mind melts!

2)What do you enjoy the most about your work?

Meeting and working with some amazing people, students and colleagues who are sensitive and very open. I find my relationships with colleagues who are artists, or aspiring artists, to be very nourishing.

3)Have you been professionally photographed before? How did you feel? (Before the shoot with Amanda)

I have been photographed as a dancer, student and performer. It felt good because photographers capture moments that are hard to recollect at times when you are in motion. The captured moment reminds me of what I felt in that millisecond of complex movement which could be impossible to recollect without the moment captured by the photographer.

4)If you knew then what you know now, what would you tell your 18-year-old self?

Know who you are.

5)When things get tough, how do you keep yourself going?

One of my idols is Stephen Fry, he says that tough times are a bit like the weather, it’s there, you are aware of it but it will pass. I also recall a Buddhist saying that it’s useless stressing – if you can do something about a situation then do it, if not then it’s needless to stress about it.

6) How do you define success?

Feeling genuinely fulfilled.

Any suggestions for young people who want to pursue dance as a full time profession?

Take a course, and take it seriously. When you finish, see if it’s what you really want to do. However, to have another skill is also very important, but you will have dance as your main work and any other job becomes secondary.

Women in Malta Official trailer:https://youtu.be/hlhe5zv7KOQ

The Making of “Women in Malta” 2015 Video:https://youtu.be/jvSr8Xpt3K0

Women in Malta 2015 Project page

Exhibition: Women in Malta – Lorraine Spiteri

Locations: Malta Chamber of Commerce

Lorraine Spiteri – Chairperson of the Malta Confederation of Women’s Organisations

She has been an activist in the women’s movement in Malta since 1978. Her main academic background and research are related to women and gender issues with special focus on the labour market and the media.
The MCWO is an umbrella organisation representing 15 local organisations.

The first time I met her, she told me she is 54, I couldn’t believe it. She look at least 10 years younger than that. She is a warm and caring woman. When she talks about what she believes with women’s right, she is strong and press the matter firmly. Recently she told me a happy news that her 3 submissions for Malta were shortlisted amongst member states and finally one also made it to the 11 selected good practices for improving women’s participation in politics.

Q &A

1)When you feel down, what you usually do to make yourself feel better? How do you deal with stress?

If I am going through some bad moments I usually keep it to myself and try to work things out knowing that tomorrow is another day. To de-stress I enjoy my cup of tea and relax to classical music, go for a brisk walk or talk to a friend.

2)What you enjoy the most about your work?

I enjoy the feeling that I can bring about change for a better world for women and girls. I want a better future for our children than what I have found. More respect and dignity for women means a better and healthier

3)Have you been professionally photographed before? How did you feel? (Before the shoot with Amanda)

Yes I have been professionally photographed twice. I felt embarrassed initially but then it went great.

4)If you knew then what you know now, what would you tell your 18-year-old self?
Be yourself. Treat yourself with love and respect always.

5)When things get tough, how do you keep your- self going?

When things get tough I just keep on going. I adapt to all situations as much as I can and move on. When I was younger I was more rigid, now life experience has made me more flexible, stronger and wiser.

6) How do you define success?

I would define success as the satisfaction of having done something ac- cording to what one wished to achieve. It gives that good feeling inside, when I achieve something it really makes me happy.

Link about Lorraine: https://www.mcwo.net/

Women in Malta Official trailer:https://youtu.be/hlhe5zv7KOQ

The Making of “Women in Malta” 2015 Video:https://youtu.be/jvSr8Xpt3K0

Women in Malta 2015 Project page

Exhibition: Women in Malta – Janet Mifsud

Location:Mediterranean Conference Centre

Janet Mifsud – Professor in Pharmacology of University of Malta

There were 5 days of photo shoots for ‘Women in Malta’.

I got up 5:30am, left home about 6:30am to get to Valletta before 8am. I made sandwiches for my team and I. But after I got the basil from Janet, it took my sandwiches to another level!  I was amazed, the power of herbs!

This amazing woman, Janet Mifsud, she is quick, efficient and knowledgeable. She is a professor at university of Malta, knows all about medicine and chemistry, which are totally mysteries to me. I told her I think cooking is magic, because when I bake a cake, before and after the oven it changes completely. Then she started to tell me that’s because of protein etc.  When she came for the photo shoot for “Women in Malta”, she brought me fresh herbs, that was a lovely surprise. In our last conversation we were talking about getting fresh herbs. She really has excellent memory. 🙂

Q& A

1)When you feel down, what you usually do to make yourself feel better? How do you deal with stress?

Just do something else not related at all eg read a book or watch a movie or hear music and sleep on it – things always are better the next morn- ing.

2)What you enjoy the most about your work?

The huge variety of things I am involved in and people I meet and the fact that one day is never like the other.

3)Have you been professionally photographed before? How did you feel? (Before the shoot with Amanda)

Once long time ago, – I never did see the end results so I still dont know how I did – they weren’t as well prepared as Amanda.

4)If you knew then what you know now, what would you tell your 18-year-old self?

Never stop to find new challenges or understimate yourself and your po- tential.

5)When things get tough, how do you keep your- self going?

I try raise above the problem mentally and always remember that closing one door opens 100 others – sometimes things happen for a reason we only appreciate retrospectivally.

6) How do you define success?

Learning to make most of one’s talents, while trying to understand the different perspectives of all those around you, yet being at peace with your innerself.

Her Biography:

Prof Janet Mifsud obtained her PhD in 1995 from Queen’s University of Belfast in the pharmacology of chiral antiepileptic drugs. Her research activities in epilepsy are undertaken with colleagues in Mater Dei Hospital, Queen’s University of Belfast and King’s College London, where she has been appointed visiting lecturer. She has published extensively and has been invited to European and World Epilepsy Conferences. She was appointed on the organising and scientific committees of the 2011 International Congress on Epilepsy and European Epilepsy and Society Conference, 2010 and European Pharmacology Congress, EPHAR, 2012. She has also organised various conferences in Malta such as an International School in Pharmacokinetics in conjunction with the University of Minnesota and the University of Pisa and various national epilepsy conferences.

She co-ordinates pharmacology study units offered at the University of Malta for Faculties of Medicine and Surgery; Health Sciences; Science; Education; and Dental Surgery. She also co-ordinates an MSc (Pharmacology/Clinical Pharmacology) and a Pharmacotoxicology Course, both of which have been approved under the Get Qualified Scheme of Malta Enterprise.

Prof Mifsud was Secretary General for the European Epilepsy Academy and is presently Vice-President for the International Bureau for Epilepsy; and member, Joint Task Force, European Epilepsy Research and Advocacy. She is an advisor, Caritas Malta Epilepsy Association. She is also involved in several EU and internationally funded projects.

Prof Mifsud was national expert on the scientific Pharmacogenetics Working Group (PGWP) in European Medicines Agency in London. In 2010, she was appointed by the Malta Council for Science and Technology as national contact point for COST, the intergovernmental framework for European Co-operation in the field of Scientific and Technical Research. Dr Mifsud was appointed the first Commissioner, National Commission for the Promotion of Equality (NCPE) in 2004 and was for several years a member of the Public Service Commission. She is presently Board Member, Malta Council for Science and Technology and a member of Team Europe, EU Representation in Malta.

She was interviewed by the US Embassy’s event “International Day of the Girl”, link: https://malta.usembassy.gov/idotg-janetmifsud.html

Links about Janet:

https://www.um.edu.mt/profile/janetmifsud

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Janet_Mifsud

Women in Malta Official trailer:https://youtu.be/hlhe5zv7KOQ

The Making of “Women in Malta” 2015 Video:https://youtu.be/jvSr8Xpt3K0

Women in Malta 2015 Project page

Exhibition: Women in Malta – Rebecca Farrugia Hall

Location:Mediterranean Conference Centre

Dress by Elisha Camilleri Designs | Fabric by Camilleri Paris Mode

Rebecca Farrugia Hall – Flutist at Malta Philharmonic Orchestra

I remember that I wanted to have a musician in my project. A musician who is actively performS music. I ask around and I found her. She had an interesting interview on internet that caught my eye. I thought she would be an interesting person to photograph.

We got on really well for the first time we met. This project is a challenge both for me and for all the 15 women. I was glad she accepted my invitation although she really hate to be photographed. The energy we created together when we first met told me the fact that made me have the confidence and good feelings about the portrait session and I think we will have a lot fun during the photo shoot.

Some people just have the charm that make you feel you can be comfortable and be yourself to talk to. Rebecca is very straight forward, no nonsense, her vivid description with words just so interesting. she has about 90 concerts a year both in Malta and abroad and just recently back from China. She is Maltese – Canadian flutist and has been at the forefront of music in Malta since moving to the island in 1996. Last year she a orgnaized a concert “In her own voice – a celebration of women composers” . In addition to her busy performance schedule, Dr. Hall lectures in flute and baroque music for the University of Malta.

Q& A

1)When you feel down, what you usually do to make yourself feel better? How do you deal with stress?

Work, play tennis or play with my children. I’m very used to stress. I walk way from and problem for a moment and I come back.

2)What you enjoy the most about your work?

I love what I so so much and I get to share my joy and knowledge with people. In whatever I do, I get to share my love and skill to people.

3)Have you been professionally photographed before? How did you feel? (Before the shoot with Amanda)

I hate it. It can’t translate who you are. The energy is not there.

4)If you knew then what you know now, what

would you tell your 18-year-old self?

Be patient in everything you do and choose wisely. But I don’t think I’m fundamentally changed.

5)When things get tough, how do you keep your- self going?

I thrive on it. If I don’t have challenge I get bored.

6) How do you define success?

When everything is in balance.

The making of video of Women in Malta:https://bit.ly/1LqvmWE

Link about Rebecca:

https://www.maltaorchestra.com/uncategorized/rebecca-farrugia-hall/

https://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20140420/arts-entertainment/Celebrating-women-composers.515828

https://www.facebook.com/CosmosWindEnsemble/

Women in Malta Official trailer:https://youtu.be/hlhe5zv7KOQ

The Making of “Women in Malta” 2015 Video:https://youtu.be/jvSr8Xpt3K0

Women in Malta 2015 Project page

Exhibition: Women in Malta – Mariella Pisani Bencini

Location:Teatru Manoel

Mariella Pisani Bencini –  TV Producer and Writer

Winner of national literary award 2005

The 15 women I photographed are all very active with tight daily schedule. I do appreciated that they took time to meet me and helped me with my project.

It was a brief meeting with Mariella, she had the lovely smile as she walked in my studio.

We talk about a bit about my project and how the photo shoot is going to be then I started to ask her the questions.

Q& A

1)When you feel down, what you usually do to make yourself feel better? How do you deal with stress?When I am stressed out and consequently problems seem bigger and more unsolvable, when I end up with my back to the wall, without any solutions whatsoever, I close my eyes and pray God to take the burden off me. Prayer works wonders.

2)What you enjoy the most about your work?Through my television programme Meander, I come in contact with art- ists from all fields of the arts, very interesting people who have somehow through their art captured the true spirit of life. This is what I enjoy most in my work.

3)Have you been professionally photographed before?How did you feel? (Before the shoot with Amanda)I featured in the book Ladies of Malta by Nicholas Depiro. There was only one location, Casa Rocca Piccola, , I was seated and I could simply be myself. I did not consider it as a photo shoot for a photography exhi- bition, but simply as one or two photographs for a book. The photogra- pher was Patrick Fenech a professional photographer, with whom, as with Amanda, I felt very comfortable working.

4)If you knew then what you know now, whatwould you tell your 18-year-old self?I would tell my eighteen year old self to be more tolerant of other people and their views, less rebellious and less impulsive.

5)When things get tough, how do you keep your-self going?When things get tough, as they tend to do throughout life’s experiences, I tend to work harder. Work and writing keep my mind off other things and drive me to keep going.

6) How do you define success?Success is the feeling of fulfilment in the way one is living one’s life.Her novel has won Boydell & Brewer Prize

Links about Mariella:

https://www.facebook.com/meandernet/https://www.independent.com.mt/articles/2005-01-07/local-news/Let’s-Do-lunch-with-Mariella-Pisani-Bencini-70616

Women in Malta Official trailer:https://youtu.be/hlhe5zv7KOQ

The Making of “Women in Malta” 2015 Video:https://youtu.be/jvSr8Xpt3K0

Women in Malta 2015 Project page