Practical information on the library

Free entrance. Consultation only, publications cannot be borrowed.


. Art, art history, Belgium's cultural heritage in particular;
. Documentary fund specialized in the Flemish Primitives;
. Conservation-restoration of works of art; 
. Physics and chemistry of artist's materials and restoration products.

. c. 60 000 books;

. 1600 periodicals;

. 2000 sales catalogues (1890 of which are searchable in the digital catalogue). 

Our library is a research resource for art and cultural history - and Belgian cultural heritage in particular - for the conservation-restoration of works of art and chemical, physical and material technical research of art works and restoration products. The collection contains titles that cannot be found elsewhere in Belgium such as old, highly specialised, rare or sold-out books and journals.
Particularly well represented is the art of the Southern Netherlands and of Belgium. Other European nations (the Netherlands, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, etc.) are covered as well, as is contemporary art, photography and other disciplines such as archaeology, anthropology and history. The rich collection of books on ancient glass, manuscript illumination and other fields of study is due to the interest of internal specialists. The collection is constantly growing thanks to purchases, gifts and exchange publications with partner institutes in Belgium and abroad (Europe, United States, Latin America, Japan, etc.). This latter method of acquiring publications enables us to enrich the collection with unpublished documents that are often unavailable in other Belgian libraries.  


All documents (articles in periodicals included) are indexed using a specialised thesaurus.
. Online catalogue via BALaT;

. Works acquired before 1998 are searchable via index cards;

. Common catalogue of the libraries of the federal public services, with the possibility to reserve documents. Please note that this catalogue is updated quarterly. For the most recent acquisitions see BALaT;

. Searches on author name, title, artist name or subject with the help of keywords;

. Names of places are to be entered in their original language (e.g. Antwerpen, Den Haag, Mons, Paris, Roma...; exception: Brussel or Bruxelles). Surname followed by first name.


Possibility to make black and white or colour copies (photocopy cards are on sale at the reception desk; we only accept cash payments). The personnel of the reading room reserves the right to forbid the copying of valuable or damaged volumes at any time.

Publications in the online catalogue can be reserved through the Common catalogue of the libraries of the federal public services.

Contact: infotheek @