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
  • Consult subject guides, bibliographies and other research aids

If you need help, please ask our Reference Specialists at the enquiry desks or contact the Reference Service.

We offer a range of free Reader sessions and 1-2-1 consultations to help you make the best use of the Library's collections.

You’ll need a Reader Pass

Opening hours for all Reading Rooms

Blog posts

Voices of British theatre design: Explore the world of theatre behind the scenes

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Celebrating the launch of 'Voices of British theatre design', an exciting new British Library website featuring over 50 audio clips from National Life Stories oral history recordings.

Art, poetry and social action – some of 2021’s less conventional Nordic acquisitions

Tuesday, January 4, 2022

In European Collections, where we focus on printed books post-1850, many of our acquisitions come through regular contracted suppliers. These suppliers are equipped to provide the breadth of publications the Library needs to stay relevant as an international research organisation....

Early modern Iran seen through the eyes of G. Hofstede van Essen

Tuesday, January 4, 2022

As a well-travelled physician, scholar and Royal Society fellow, Hans Sloane had an interest in foreign places, their people and customs, which also fed into his collection of drawings, such as those kept in Add MS 5234. This album is...

Occupied City, 1921-2021

Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Paul van Ostaijen wrote his poetry collection Bezette Stad (‘Occupied City’), with art work by Jesper Oscar and René Victor, in 1921. It was published by Sienjaal, set in Antwerp and written in Berlin. The Great War is the topic,...

More blog posts

Library experts

Dr Malini Roy

Head of Visual Arts

Felicity Myrone

Lead Curator, Western Prints and Drawings

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: 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

Photographs and Words (hardback)

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

£25

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