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

The Illustrated Guide to Medieval Love, Part II

14 February 2016

Walking down your local high street over the past few weeks, you might have noticed some peculiar changes. Card shops have transformed into love-heart themed grottos filled with fluffy bears and pink gift wrap. Florists have been whipping themselves up...

Don Quixote as Napoleon: propaganda in Spain’s war of independence, II: the print.

11 February 2016

The Mexico edition of Francisco Meseguer, El Don Quixote de ahora con el Sancho Panza de antaño, was published in 1809, after the Córdoba edition of the same year. It includes a the coloured fold-out cartoon apparently not present in...

A Group of Sikh Miniatures on Ivory

10 February 2016

This post describes an early group of portraits on ivory of Sikh rulers and others dating from the 1840s

Happy Chinese New Year!

08 February 2016

Today is Chinese New Year (the Year of the Monkey) and to celebrate we thought we would share with you some of the amazing images we have of China made by the artist William Alexander (1767-1816) who was appointed draughtsman...

More blog posts

Library experts

Dr Malini Roy

Curator, Visual Arts Collections

External links

The British Library is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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