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With a circulating collection of more than 150,000 books, RISD’s library—a beautifully designed space housed in a former grand banking hall—offers a wide range of resources in art, design, architecture and more, along with a Materials Resource Center, a strong collection of artist’s books and other specialized resources of interest to artists and designers.

Inspiring collections for art + design research

Founded in 1878, the RISD library is one of the country's oldest independent art college libraries. Its circulating collection of more than 150,000 volumes offers unusual depth and richness in the areas of art, architecture, design and photography.

The collection provides strong historical and contemporary perspectives and specialized materials in landscape architecture, ceramics, textiles and jewelry to support upper-level research. RISD’s specialized library is also noted for its artist’s books collection, rare books, some 400 periodical subscriptions and collection of outstanding visual resources.