Engage With Us

Image: Guido Stilon collection
Woman looks into an image viewer, early 1960s

Engage With Us

Since 2017, Magna Żmien has gathered and digitised a large amount of sound, image and audio-visual material dating from the twentieth century, all linked with the Maltese Islands and the Maltese diaspora. This audiovisual content is donated by members of the public from their private home collections in order to preserve it and to allow Magna Żmien and collaborators to reinterpret the material.

Magna Żmien makes this material available for the purposes of artistic and historical research, creative development and public awareness. This access allows for reinterpretation and renewed engagement with the digital collections. However, as this material has been generously donated to us by members of the public, Magna Żmien has a responsibility to ensure that the content of our archive is used respectfully and in line with the wishes of the donors, as well as to protect their privacy.

As of May 2022 we have gathered over 11,000 images and recordings from members of the public in Malta. We are extremely grateful to everyone who continues to bring material forward for us to preserve and use.

Since 2018 we have presented their stories in 11 public events, performances and exhibitions across Malta and abroad, in Tunis, Vienna, Budapest, and London. 2022 is set to be another busy year of collaborations.

  • 3700 photographs
  • 5100 negatives
  • 1300 slides
  • 360 8mm films
  • 90 audiocassettes
  • 100 open reel tapes
  • 600 other files from digital sources

How to Access the Archive

There are two ways to access our archive: as part of a collaboration proposal, or as an independent researcher. In both cases our processes are similar:

  1. Contact us with an idea of what you’re looking for and the purpose of your research.
  2. If we have material that may suit your interests, or your project sounds like something we would be interested in collaborating with, we will set up a meeting at our studio in Valletta to go through our collections with you.
  3. If you need more time to search through the archive, we can set up further meetings, or else may provide remote access to our collections.

Please note: although we provide descriptive metadata for all of our collection items, the descriptions of each may not be equally detailed across the entire archive. This is not a stock archive, so be prepared to spend time digging!

Independent Research Access fees

For research requests that aren’t related to a collaborative project with Magna Żmien, we ask that you come to our studio for a couple of hours to search through the material with us and understand the context of items within collections. For this there is a one-time fee, priced according to the nature of your project.

  • €40 fee (incl. VAT) for academic or artistic research
  • €100 fee (incl. VAT) for organisations, commercial entities, funded creative projects
  • An additional negotiable licensing fee is applicable if archive material is used in publications or for broadcast.

Collaboration Project

If your request is for a collaborative project, there are no access fees. While every effort will be made to accommodate requests for collaboration, as Magna Żmien is a voluntary organisation the required resources are not always available internally. However, we are happy to participate in public and private funding applications, having been recipients of numerous awards in the past.

You should also be aware that the IP rights of our archive belong in part to the donors, who may need to be consulted on the use of their material, depending on the nature of your project. We will not use items from our archive for commercial profit without the explicit consent of the donors.