United Nations Photo

UN Photo Library


The United Nations Photo Library holds a collection of approximately 800,000 photographs dating back to the mid-1940s chronicling the history of the Organization and its work. The collection includes coverage of historic UN meetings and events, as well as a wide array of field coverage from its earliest days.

The Photo Library's mission is to make its collection available to media organizations, governments and non-governmental organizations, researchers and civil society at large, in order to foster public understanding of the work of the United Nations and its goals.

The photo collection consists of negatives, slides and digital images. UN photos acquired since May 2004 and a selection of historical photos are included in the digital photo database. Earlier accessioned photos are being incrementally digitized and added to the database.

The UN Photo website contains a selection of images from the UN photo collection. It can be searched by keywords or browsed by categories and special subject galleries. (Click here for information on how to request high-resolution digital photos online.) To request UN photos that are not available on this web site, please contact the Photo Library.


The Photo Library provides information, reference and research services to users by telephone, e-mail, and in person. Requests are fulfilled in the order received. For inquiries, please contact the Photo Library.

Clients may visit the Photo Library in person to do their own research in the photo archives and/or to search the digital photo database through laptops that can be made available for their use (with prior arrangement). Service is on a first come, first served basis. Research assistance is provided upon request.


The Photo Library is open between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. from Monday through Friday, except holidays.

Users with a valid UN ID may visit the Photo Library without notice; however, a prior appointment is advised, given new flexible workspace and computer arrangements.

All other research visits are arranged by appointment only. (Click here for more information on how to schedule a visit to the Photo Library.)


UN Photo Library
Department of Global Communication
402 East 42nd Street
United Nations, S-11 West
New York, NY 10017
Phone: 212-963-0034
Click here to e-mail the Photo Library

Visits to the Photo Library:
(Please contact us in advance)
11th floor, West side
United Nations Headquarters
New York, NY 10017