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Arts Reading Room

The tranquil and restful Arts Reading Room is a quiet space to sit back and watch a DVD, listen to a CD, browse the latest cultural magazines or choose a title from the art, music and performing arts book collection.

The Arts Reading Room's browsing collection is just a snapshot of the larger Arts collection, which includes Australian and overseas collections covering music, the visual arts and performing arts.

The reading room connects directly with the Redmond Barry Reading Room and Newspapers & Family History Reading Rooms, and is adjacent to the Heritage Collections Reading Room.

About the Arts Reading Room

The Arts Reading Room reopened in September 2018 as part of the Library's Vision 2020 redevelopment project.

Originally built in 1887, the gallery space was formerly known as the Buvelot Gallery, and later Swinburne Hall, and was part of the National Gallery. Swinburne Hall was home to studios and acted as an exhibition space, and for a time it was used as a lending library.


Daily 10am–6pm


  • magazines
  • sheet music
  • group AV listening & viewing area
  • CD listening posts
  • DVD viewing stations
  • catalogue PC
  • self-service point
  • seating for 26 with physical distancing measures