BJ Archer

Encyclopedie van tekens en symbolen,
John Laing

Labyrinths, ancient myths & modern uses,
Sig Lonegren

The Villas,
Jan Vercruysse

In Watermelon Sugar,
Richard Brautigan

When Species Meet,
Donna Haraway

Et Puis,
Albin Michel

Hilma af Klint. Notes and Methods,
Hilma af Klint

De omsloten tuin,
Rob Aben

Britta Benke

Bernd Lohaus

Improvising Sculpture as Delayed Fictions,
Felicia Atkinson

Gertrude Stein & Atak

A Flower meets a Dog,
Maud Gourdon

Ada King Lovelace,
Joasia Krysa

Hildegard von Bingen,
Ingrid Riedel

Den Nederlandtsen Hovenier,
J. van der Groen

Now Leaves,
M. Dean

Japanese emblemsand designs ,
W. Amstutz

Diter Rot. Mundunculum,
Diether Roth

Silk Poems,
Jen Bervin

The Necropastoral,
Joyelle McSweeney

The Wild Boys,
William Burroughs

Maggie Nelson

The Worls is Round,
Gertrude Stein

Mary Shelley

De Kunstenbibliotheek

Godshuizenlaan 2A
9000 Gent, België


Ma, di en wo 9u00—18u00
Do 9u00 – 22u00
Vr 9u00 – 16u00
Gesloten tijdens het weekend en officiële feestdagen
Gesloten op 4 maart, 1 mei, 30 en 31 mei, 10 juni en Paasvakantie van 15 tot en met 22 april


+32 (0)9 243 36 89




De Kunstenbibliotheek brengt de collecties van KASK, S.M.A.K., Design Museum, STAM, HISK en de Gentse Gidsen samen onder één dak. (…)


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Essential Reading #10: Topo Copy

From 28 April until 5 June 2019, Gent based openlab-research -center Topo Copy presents a selection of publications that are most valuable to their practice. Essential Reading is a project that aims to enlarge, diversify and enrich Kunstenbibliotheek’s book collection. 

Essential Reading #10: Topo Copy

Books 4 Maud Gourdon. A flower is speaking to a dog

Maud Gourdon stelt op donderdag 16 mei 2019 haar nieuwe publicatie ‘A Flower is Speaking to a Dog’ voor in BOEKS. Het boek wordt pagina per pagina gedeconstrueerd in de vorm van enkele ruimtelijke ingrepen in de kloostergaanderij. Het roept de sensatie op van een besloten tuin die uit woorden en beelden bestaat.

Boeks 4 Maud Gourdon


Suggested reading list on feminism, identity and art, on black identity/diaspora, art and culture. This reading list is only a selection, it’s based on the collection of Kunstenbibliotheek and largely inspired on selections made by guests from Kunstenbibliotheek’s program Essential Reading: #1 with Eva Barois De Caevel, #3 with Nat Muller, #5 with Christine Eyene and suggestions made by Ariella Azoulay and Els Roelandt. 

Leesroute collectie

Send us your zines

Proposal for a Possible Collection is a display of artists’ books, magazines, zines, ephemera and other printed matter published by small or independent publishers, independent organizations, collectives, artists or writers, collected by Kunstenbibliotheek.

Boeks 2: Stoppen met Lezen

Until 17 March the presentation Boeks 2: Stoppen met Lezen runs, a project by the Antwerp project space Troebel Neyntje and Idris Sevenans. The poet-visual artists Marcel Broodthaers and Marcel van Maele already played in the 1960s with making their collections of poems unreadable. Following these godfathers of the illegible, Sevenans and Troebel Neyntje and a group of students graphic design and installation try to put us on the right track. 

Essential Reading #7

In October 2018 Inge Vinck, member of architects de vylder vinck taillieu, selected 10 books for Essential Reading 7. These were presented in Kunstenbibliotheek from 25 October to 26 November 2018. Inge Vinck made a mural in the art library on the occasion of this presentation. This mural is permanently on view at Kunstenbibliotheek. View pdf booklet

Essential Reading #3

with Nat Muller
A public talk & discussion

opening 29.03.2018 19:00, Kunstenbibliotheek

Essential Reading #3, Nat Muller


Essential Reading is a project that aims to enlarge, diversify and enrich Kunstenbibliotheek’s book collection. Which books are, today, really indispensable for an art library?  Guests of Essential Reading bring together and present in the library the books they consider most valuable in their life and work.

Essential Reading #10: Topo Copy
Essential Reading #9, Atelier Bildraum
Essential Reading #8, Valérie Mannaerts
Essential Reading #7: Inge Vinck (Architecten De Vylder Vinck Taillieu)
Essential Reading#6: Peggy Totté
Essential Reading #5: Christine Eyene
Essential Reading #4: Jolien Deceuninck & Flora Blommaert
Essential Reading #3, Nat Muller
Essential Reading #2, Nathalie Zonnenberg
Essential Reading #1, Eva Barois De Caevel


BOEKS is a platform for showing books on the Bijloke site in Ghent. Every month, for one night, a book, its maker and publisher take center stage. Afterwards, remains stick around on walls, ceilings and floors. Along the way a BOEKS collection comes into being.


BOEKS celebrates printed matter, thick and thin, young and old, unique and serial, legible and illegible. Above all, BOEKS loves and highlights precisely those books that ask for it, because they are good, still unknown or fed up with the stacks or boxes they are confined to. BOEKS collaborates, contextualizes, supports and produces. The platform shows text, visual art and graphic design.


BOEKS is housed in the 15th-century convent corridor connecting the Kunstenbibliotheek with the STAM. BOEKS is an initiative of KASK and the Kunstenbibliotheek.


More info at boeks.gent

Boeks 4 Maud Gourdon
Boeks 3 Frik, pedant, schoolvos
Boeks 2 Stoppen met lezen
Boeks 1 De Keyser’s Stockings


In 2015 1m3 was initiated as an exhibition space dedicated to artists’ books from Kunstenbibliotheek’s collection. A guest curator is asked to make her/his selection from the library and present it within the vitrines of 1m3. 



1M3: 102 Craters on Venus, Sophie Nys (23.05.19 tot 30.06.19)
1M3: Wanting to be a book, Luc Derycke (22.01.19 to 22.04.19)
1M3: Lubok Verlag, Katia Ballegeer (21.09.16 to 04.11.16)
1M3: Welcome to Imschoot Uitgevers! by Joris Dockx (03.06.16 to 01.07/16)
1M3: Ki-Kokekwa by Henri Jacobs (29.04.16 to 27.05.16)


Kunstenbibliotheek closely follows up the artscene and weekly presents new aquisitions. Next to general collection development, Kunstenbibliotheek focusses on the following themes:


• The city of Ghent, books on artists, designers, architects or writers born or living in Ghent.

• Publications linked to the activities of Kunstenbibliotheek’s different partners (KASK, Design museum Gent, HISK, SMAK, STAM, Gentse Gidsen). Kunstenbibliotheek’s collection wants to become an accurate reflection of the activities of collaborators, staff, guests, alumni or students)

• Positions from the so-called geographical and/or intellectual periphery: publications on art and art theory from Asia, Middle East, Africa, South America with a special attention for decolonization theory, gender and LGBT studies.

• In the past year a first catch-up movement was made in collecting publications about and from female artists and/or authors or curators. Kunstenbibliotheek continues this policy in the year to come.

Acquisitions May 2019 (selection)
Acquisitions April 2019 (selection)
Acquisitions March 2019 (selection)
Acquisitions February 2019 (selection)

Artists’ books

The collection of artists’ books contains special editions and limited edition books. A large part of the collection is dedicated to Cobra, minimal and conceptual art. 


In addition to publications published by artists under their own management, work by specialised publishers such as Lubok Verlag, Edition Hansjörg Mayer, MER Paper Kunsthalle, APE and Roma Publications, Nieves Books, etc. is collected.  


The collection is searchable in the catalogue and via the image bank. The publications themselves are available on request and can be consulted by appointment. 

Collection Artistbooks (selection)


The current volumes of the magazine subscriptions are available in the art library but are not lent out. Articles from previous years can be requested by e-mail. 

Magazines: Architecture and Landscape architecture
Magazines: Visual arts
Magazines: Performing Arts and Audiovisual Arts
Magazines: Design


In the summer of 2018 Kunstenbibliotheek started its Zines collection. This collection has not yet been catalogued.

Zine Collection (selection)

Karel Geirlandt Collection

The Karel Geirlandt Collection is named after the first chairman of the Association for the Museum of Contemporary Art in Ghent (now SMAK). The collection was started when the Association was founded and grew with the museum. It forms a closed whole and contains books on art from 1945 to 2003 with a specialisation in conceptual and minimal art in Europe and the United States, and the artworks and artists collected by SMAK. This collection can only be consulted in the library. 

Collection Karel Geirlandt (selection)


Art Source
Arts Premium Collection




Google Scholar

Artistic Archive

The Royal Academy of Fine Arts (KASK) was founded by painter Ph. K. Marissal in 1748. KASK’s archive dates from 1770 and was supplemented until the middle of the 20th century. It consists of an arts archive and an administrative archive. 

The arts archive consists mainly of academic drawings, architecture and visual arts, as well as sculptures, paintings and posters. The academic drawings contain examples of the different drawing methods that were taught, more specifically drawing according to prints, plaster or living models. 


The collection includes drawings by artists from the Latem group, such as Gust De Smet, Léon De Smet, Albert Servaes and architectural drawings by former students such as Alphons Groothaert, Victor Horta, Geo Henderick, G.Eysselink, paintings awarded the J.Pipyn prize by H.Malfait, J.Burssens, Steve Schepens, Steven Balen and others. 


The art archive can be consulted via the catalogue and the image bank http://bib.hogent.be and can be viewed by appointment. 

Collection Artistic Archive