Head – Olga Zankovets
Librarian – Alina Medvedskaya
Restoration building, 25 Kirova Street, office 108, tel.: +375 (17) 364 71 67
The central task of the library is to meet the professional needs of museum specialists and other users in research, exposition and exhibition, educational and publishing activities.
The library fund contains 40.000 books and periodicals. The following collections are separate:
- catalogues of exhibitions in Belarus and other countries;
- catalogues of artists’ solo exhibitions;
- collection of rare books;
- collection of postcards;
- collection of periodicals;
- collection of clippings.
The acquisition of the library fund is primarily focused on the study and research of museum collections of ancient Belarusian and modern Belarusian art, Russian art, art of Western Europe and the East.
The library of the National Art Museum is available for scientific employees from Belarusian museums, fine art experts, culture experts, artists, teachers, graduate students and students of higher educational institutions, who can use the reading room of the library with permission from the museum administration.
The formation of the library of the National Art Museum of the Republic of Belarus as a specialized departmental collection of books on fine arts began in 1945 (the excellent library of the State Picture Gallery perished in the still occupied Minsk). The library is an essential part of any museum. First of all, its purpose is to serve as a source of information for scientific associates in the preparation of catalogues, lectures, excursions, etc. For 75 years of work and continuous collection of literature, the museum’s scientific library has become one of the best book collections on art in the republic. It is well known among art professionals. In addition to museum staff, fine art experts, colleagues from other museums, culture experts, artists, graduate students and university students constantly use the library.
The library council got started in 2004. It consists of research staff –fine art experts. It forms the purchasing policy of the library, monitors the timely receipt of the necessary literature on art in the library fund. In addition, the library is constantly replenished through donations of entire thematic collections of books from other museums, fine art experts and artists.
The library has catalogues and albums of museums, catalogues of artists’ solo exhibitions, monographs, conference proceedings, scientific papers and messages from museums, reference and bibliographic literature.
Sometimes unique editions come to the library. For example, the album of sketches donated by the relatives of famous Belarusian artist Mikhail Filippovich.
Pre-revolutionary and pre-war catalogues of Belarusian exhibitions, which are already a bibliographic rarity, are of great importance for the library. Among them are small-circulation catalogues of the First Art Exhibition of 1921, all-Belarusian exhibitions of the 1920s, the exhibition of Slutsk belts of 1927 and the ten-day exhibition of fine arts of the Byelorussian SSR of 1940 in Moscow, etc.
In 1980, the library received 20 books of the 19th–20th centuries donated by Belarusian priests from their home libraries (‘Church Records’ 1898–1909, ‘Sunday Readings’ 1934–1937, ‘Church Book’ 1903, ‘Bible’ 1903 and others).
The library contains rare books from the beginning of the last century. These are five volumes of the ‘Editions of the Grand Duke Nikolai Mikhailovich. Russian portraits of the 18th and 19th centuries’ (Saint Petersburg, 1909), four volumes of ‘Catalogue of my collection of Russian engraved and lithographed portraits of 1913’. A. V. Morozova (Saint Petersburg, 1913), books dedicated to the Patriotic War of 1812 – ‘Exhibition of 1812 dedicated to the 100th anniversary of victory in the Patriotic War’ (M., 1913) and the seven-volume book ‘Patriotic War and Russian Society 1812–1912’ (Saint Petersburg, 1912). The iconographic material of these publications is important for the attributive activity of scientific departments.
The library reference literature provides invaluable assistance in the work: old and new encyclopedias, dictionaries, reference books and periodicals – the magazines ‘Art’ (Moscow, 1905–1938, 1952–1990), ‘Old Years’ (Moscow, 1908–1914). ), ‘Apollo’ (Moscow, 1909-1917); art magazines of the 1920s and 1930s ‘Nasha Niva’ (Moscow), ‘Proletarian Art’, ‘Art to the Masses’, ‘Rabis’ and ‘Soviet Art’, which came from the collection of Belarusian artist Mikhail Filippovich. They are not always found in the republic depositories. The library has received magazines that fairly fully reflect the development of Soviet art and museum affairs since 1958: ‘Artist’, ‘Young Artist’, ‘Creativity’, ‘Decorative and Applied Art’ and ‘Soviet Museum’ (since 1993 published under titled ‘World of Museum’).
From the Belarusian periodical press – the newspapers ‘Litaratura i mastatstva’ (since 1948), ‘Culture’ (since 1994), the magazine ‘Mastatstva’ (since 1983, from the beginning of the first issue), ‘Belaruski gistarychny chasopis’ (since 1994), ‘Spadchyna’ (until 1990 it was published under the title ‘Pomniki historyi i kultury Belarusi’ (Monuments of History and Culture of Belarus).
Over the years, the museum library was headed by B. V. Berkovich (1945–1946), O. A. Borovik (1946–1957), V. I. Kolas (1957–1987), L. L. Barsukova (1987–1990), A. V. Margulevich (1990–1994), G. P. Pyzhik (1994–2010) and O. V. Zankovets (from 2010 to the present).
S. I. Kitanina, E. M. Korzanova and T. V. Baranova worked in the library at different times
The library moved to a new building of the restoration block on 25 Kirova Street in January 2022. Now unique publications, of which there are more than 40 thousand copies, are stored in special rooms with a certain microclimate. There are two rooms here: a reading room and a library stack.
The library of the National Art Museum of the Republic of Belarus continues to replenish with new interesting publications. Its doors are always open to colleagues, specialists and friends of the museum.