Taken in 1958 by the late Guido Stilon, this print features the renowned fountain adjacent to the Valletta Design Cluster which was formerly known as Il-Biċċerija. It is one of the 1000s of images by the late Stilon that were entrusted to the Foundation and digitised by the Magna Żmien team.
In this post-war image, the fountain that still stands to this day was visibly already in disrepair and covered in cement. Also visible in the image are some of the residents in that street, and the milk vendor calling door to door, capturing the life and routine in this part of Valletta in the middle of the last century. The facade also contains a niche to the Madonna, recently restored along with the building after decades of use as a bakery for the district. The chimneys, visible in the image and some ovens have also been restored and have been retained as features within the complex.
The inauguration of the photo puts Guido Stilon’s image on permanent display for the public, highlighting the historical building in which the Magna Żmien archive is now housed. Magna Żmien, set up as a grassroots movement, is dedicated to digitising Maltese audio-visual personal and home collections. The image can now be viewed by visitors upon entering the Valletta Design Cluster, as it recalls the space’s past, and puts the indelible work that this small community archive is doing to digitise Maltese memories in the heart of its new home at the Valletta Design Cluster. It is a recognition of the stunning collection by Guido Stilon, a fitting monument to him as a Valletta-bred photographer and a Malta that now lives only in memories.
The image belongs to the Guido Stilon collection and is being given to the Valletta Cultural Agency to be displayed at the Valletta Design Cluster courtesy of the heirs of the Stilon estate.