Current Affairs
WATCH: Malta’s history and events through the lens of photographer Guido Stilon

A collection of photographs, negatives and slides formerly owned by photographer Guido Stilon is now in the hands of the National Archives. Stilon’s photographs depict life in Malta in the 50s and 60s.

Photographer Guido Stilon had been born in 1932, and in the 50s and 60s, through his photography, he used to show urban, rural and industrial scenes as well as Maltese streets, and he used to give an idea of life in Malta through photographs of friends and relatives. Guido Stilon’s widow, Grace Cilia Vincenti, has passed on this collection of photographs to the National Archives in Rabat.

The collection includes some 6,000 negatives and over 5,300 colour slides. These photographs show social, economic and political changes in Malta, which had just emerged from the trauma of war and was trying to find its feet in aa new world.

National Archivist Dr Charles Farrugia stated that “this collection is very important, as it is not a collection which is being generated through Government systems. These are not official photographs or photographs taken at official activities. They are simply photographs of how Guido Stilon was seeing life evolving around him. They show the most important developments in Malta, such as the change to the main entrance to Valletta, the rebuilding of the Law Court; all this is documented through the eyes of this photographer.”

Dr Farrugia added that this collection is a unique contribution to the efforts of the National Archives to preserve these photographs, which will make the national memory accessible to everyone. Critics of the photographic sector say Guido Stilon never liked to push himself, so much so that he was never included in any list of Maltese photographers, despite being known abroad and having won medals in prestigious competitions in New York for his efforts.