National Gallery S'pore has a 'hidden' 2-storey library open to the public


Siti Hawa | January 12, 2021, 02:26 PM

The Rotunda Library at National Gallery Singapore might be a lesser-known spot, even for bookworms.

It is a 'hidden' two-storey library in a circular building, complete with columns and a dome ceiling.

Photo via National Gallery Singapore

Photo via National Gallery Singapore

Historical importance

It is also a place of historical importance.

During the building's former life as the Supreme Court of Singapore, the Rotunda served as the Law Library.

Today, it is used as a research hub for the study of art history in Southeast Asia.

Photo via National Gallery Singapore

Photo via National Gallery Singapore

Houses art-historical resources

The library houses one of the world's most comprehensive collections of Singapore and Southeast Asian art-historical resources from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.

It currently holds over 20,000 physical and digital items, including rare publications and exhibition catalogues.

The library is open to walk-in visitors and no prior appointments or admission tickets are required to enter.

However, it is strictly reserved for users who want to consult references and archival materials in its collection. The facilities are not to be used for personal study, entertainment or resting.

Due to enhanced Safe Management Measures and capacity limits, those who wish to consult reference or archival materials at the Rotunda Library & Archive are encouraged to write to [email protected] in advance. Priority for entry for those wishing to consult reference or archival materials will be given to those who have made appointments.

The library is open from 10am to 12:30pm and 2-5pm from Mondays to Fridays. It is closed on public holidays.

Do also note the opening hours for the following dates:

  • Feb. 11, 2021: 10am to 12:30pm
  • Feb. 12, 2021: Closed

The Rotunda Library & Archive is open to walk-in visitors.

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Top photos via National Gallery Singapore