Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Plymouth College of Art Library

I always assume that as a member of the public I may not have access to libraries of academic institutions. In Plymouth, thanks to an initiative called Learning through Libraries in Plymouth I can access the libraries of a number of institutions on a reference only basis. I made use of this wonderful initiative today and took a trip to the Library at the Plymouth College of Art.

The Library, situated on the third floor of the building, was not really what I was expecting: the college building has a modern-looking, dramatic facade and I thought the Library would be a spacious, airy, tiled-floor sort of space. It was not like this, at all. The Library was smaller and drabber than I thought it would be - more like a medical library and less like a place to keep information on the visual arts.

The College is currently undergoing a £7.7 million extension (due to open in September 2013), but as far as I know the extension does not mean change for the Library. Although I was not enamoured with the physical space, the Library has an excellent collection of journals (over 100 different titles), plenty of individual study spaces (with laptops) and a group study area too - all the students sat at the individual study desks were talking to each other anyway when I was there, so maybe the whole area should be renamed "group study". The Library holds almost 16,000 books, which seems like quite a small number for an academic institution (Falmouth College of Art holds 50,000 volumes, for example).

Despite being slightly taken aback by the small size of the Library, I was very pleased to find what I was looking for on the shelves. In addition to my interest in libraries, in general, I was hoping to spend some time referring to a book on my new obsession - bookplates.

The book in question, A Treasury of Bookplates from the Renaissance to the Present by Fridolf Johnson was a fabulous resource, and I am very pleased that I was granted access to it.

I am toying with the idea of designing myself a bookplate at the moment. Do you have a personal bookplate? If yes, did you design it yourself, buy a ready made one, or commission an artist to design one for you?

Here are a few of the bookplates from the above mentioned book:


No comments:

Post a Comment