With its vaulted ceilings, reminiscent of the Umayyad architectural style of Qusayr Amra, and with retrieved archaeological artefacts enhancing the learning environment, Darat al Funun’s specialized library is endowed with a wide selection of reference publications. The collection, in both Arabic and English, includes carefully selected books ranging from the ancient to the contemporary arts, dealing with the history of art, artistic movements, and art techniques from the Arabic and western worlds, as well as from Asia, Africa and Latin America. It can be considered as a main focus for the specialized researcher, the art student, and the interested visitor. There is a constant flow of new and major references, which enables the user to delve deeper into the practical and theoretical aspects of the history of art. Periodicals and art journals, to which the library subscribes, as well as catalogues from major museums, keep readers up-to-date with developments in the art world. The public has access to a series of art films that focus on the history of art and on the work of prominent artists, from the Renaissance through to the 21st century.
The library further houses a digital database on Arab artists, which, together with a collection of slides and videotapes documenting Darat al Funun’s own public events and exhibitions, form a basis for future research, centred on Arab art and artists.
In addition to publishing bilingual catalogues of exhibitions and lectures organised on the premises, in 1995 Darat al Funun inaugurated its publishing program with an edited collection of lectures entitled Hiwar Al Fan Al Tashkili (Dialogues on Art).
Artefacts findings from the archaeological site are on permanent display in the library.
Then and Now