Printed matter, ever threatened by populous need for speed. Bookstores have begun to disappear, what now of our beloved libraries?! Peaceful places for public pondering. I, for one, seek these spots out.
Libraries are magical places layered in words, page upon page filled with characters, concepts, passions, conflicts, ideas, confidences. Inspirational artworks documented, collected and stored for safekeeping within the walls of any library are enticing to me.
I am fortunate to live in a city that hosts more than one fabulous example of this faltering institutional concept. My favorite of these places is the Biblioteca della Biennale aka the Biennale Library.
This spot is filled with printed matter related to every Biennale event that has taken place since the 19th century. The archives are actually so vast that the collection is divided into two spaces. One on the mainland and one in the city center.
The Biennale Library is reachable from a street entrance year-round. During the Biennale exhibition period from May to November however, the entrance is through the stunning main pavilion in the Giardini venue via a courtyard designed by none other than Carlo Scarpa (check out the article “Carlo Scarpa”).
Here you can peruse more than 140,000 volumes of artistic works covering the fine art fields of dance, theatre, architecture and visual arts. It’s a popular spot for artists, students and journalist. The library is also a peaceful spot to pause your tour of contemporary art and reflect upon those who exhibited here throughout history.