The museum library is a scientific library of art history, with an important conservation function.

The library boasts an almost unique collection of publications in the field of fine arts from the late Middle Ages to the present, with a particular emphasis on Flemish and Dutch art and on 19th and 20th century Belgian art. In addition, its special collection of 19th-century auction catalogues and the large number of publications about Surrealism have a worldwide reputation. It also possesses a large large collection of journals (some 3,000 different titles in all) and a number of subscriptions to databases including Artbibliographies Modern, Art Index, Art Sales Catalogues Online and Artprice. Since 1994, the library has also been an official partner of the Provenance Index of the Getty Art History Information Program. This prestigious project is tasked with assembling a database of all paintings sold between 1600 and 1900 at European auctions.  The library is also receiving a growing number of requests to loan rare and valuable publications for temporary exhibitions.


(subject to availability of seats in the reading room)

By appointment only
Tuesdays and Thursdays: 10:00-12:30 and13:30-16:00

target audience

The primary purpose of the library is to assist the Museums' scientific staff in fulfilling their mission. Despite this, it is open to:

- Professionals and specialists from the various branches of art
- Researchers and students from the arts sciences
- Anyone who proves that they are conducting specialized research

[Registration is against payment at the counter, upon presentation of an identity card]

- Annual card: € 20
- Monthly card: € 2,5
Students and professionals in Art history: € 5
- Photocopies: € 0,25 / copy

A copy of the library regulations is available to readers. Non-compliance will lead to immediate exclusion.
Reproduction is permitted solely for purely research and study purposes of a personal nature.

Research tools

- Files & inventories (to be consulted on the spot)
- Online Catalogue

- No work may leave the library
- Consulting the files and the use of the works are possible only on presentation of a reader's card
- No more than 5 works per reader may be requested at any one time
- The maximum waiting time for a work is fifteen minutes
- Readers can reserve requested works for no more than two weeks
Postal address

Rue du Musée/Museumstraat 5 – 1000 Brussels
Rue du Musée/Museumstraat 9 – 1000 Brussels


12.02 - 18.02.2024
01.04 - 14.04.2024
28.06 - 01.09.2024

28.10 - 03.11.2024
23.12.2024 - 12.01.2025


Ingrid Goddeeris
+32 (0)2 508 33 20