Libraries are repositories of knowledge and places of intellectual activity. Ever since antiquity they have served the cultural memory and, as such, belong to the oldest of all building types.
The world’s most important architects – from Michelangelo, Étienne-Louis Boullée to Karl Friedrich Schinkel and from Alvar Aalto, Louis Kahn and Le Corbusier to Toyo Ito and Snøhetta – dedicated themselves to this task, thus giving library buildings an exceptional position within the history of architecture.
The exhibition presents a panorama, ranging from the organisation of knowledge with examples from the »Stiftung Bibliothek Werner Oechslin« to building typology, universal libraries and developments in the digital age. A look at the extraordinarily varied history of private, national, lost, painted and fictional libraries rounds off the picture of these treasure houses of knowledge.
The fascinating role of the library in film is shown in approx. 80 short film clips at the end of the exhibition.