Our visual arts collections include paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, sculpture and historical furniture.

Collection guides

Reading Room  Paul Grundy

St Pancras Reading Rooms

At St Pancras we have 11 Reading Rooms, each specialising in a different subject area or type of material and with different opening hours. In our Reading Rooms you can:

  • Consult books, journals and other items from our collections
  • Access a wide range of electronic resources and electronic journals
  • Ask for help from information specialists at the Reference Enquiry desks
  • Consult subject guides, bibliographies and other research aids

You’ll need a Reader Pass

Opening hours for all Reading Rooms

For enquiries, please contact the Reference Service

News stories

Call for Papers

5 August 2015

The British Library and the Paul Mellon centre for studies in British Art call for papers for a Transforming Topography conference

Blog posts

SherlockNet: tagging and captioning the British Library’s Flickr images

22 August 2016

Finalists of the BL Labs Competition 2016, Karen Wang, Luda Zhao and Brian Do, inform us on the progress of their SherlockNet project: This is an update on SherlockNet, our project to use machine learning and other computational techniques to...

Umberto Boccioni 1882-1916

17 August 2016

On 17 August 1916 the Italian artist Umberto Boccioni, who was stationed in an artillery regiment near Verona, died from the injuries he suffered after he was trampled by his horse in a riding accident. A photograph of Boccioni taken...

Ascetics and Yogis in Indian painting

15 August 2016

Yogis and other types of ascetics are found in Mughal illustrated historical manuscripts showing encounters recorded in Mughal histories between the emperors Babur, Akbar and Jahangir; and also in indivdual album paintings.

Delacroix, Chassériau and Shakespeare

12 August 2016

The popularity of Shakespeare’s plays in France in the 1840s can be gauged by the fact that two albums of Shakespeare illustrations, Eugène Delacroix’s Hamlet, and Théodore Chassériau’s Othello,were published within a few months of each other, in 1843 and...

More blog posts

Library experts

Dr Malini Roy

Curator, Visual Arts Collections

Felicity Myrone

Lead Curator, Western Prints and Drawings

External links

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The National Archives

Features a wide range of records relating to the East India Company

Shop

Points of View book

Points of View: Capturing the 19th Century in Photographs (paperback)

Points of View brings together, for the first time, a selection of images from the British Library's unique collections.

£15.95

Michael Katakis: Photographs and Words

Photographs and Words (hardback)

Michael Katakis’s photographs are now held in the British Library’s collections.

£25

The Book of the British Library

The Book of the British Library

As well as holding some of the world's most prized cultural treasures, the British Library is the repository of the nation's collective memory.

£25