Access to the College Green area of campus will be restricted until further notice. PennCard holders and some Penn affiliates may enter and exit Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center through the Rosengarten Undergraduate Study Center on the ground floor, and may enter and exit the Fisher Fine Arts Library through the 34th Street entrance to Meyerson Hall. See our Service Alerts for details.

Contemporary Rare & Special Collections at the Fisher Fine Arts Library

While the Rare Book & Special Collections at the Fine Arts Library are grounded in architecture, city planning, and historic preservation, it has since grown to reflect new areas of study and research within arts and design disciplines.

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Much like Perkins’ intention behind establishing the ICA—to expose students to what was “new and happening” in art and culture—the Rare Book Library has grown through such recent acquisitions as Buckminster Fuller’s Fluid Geography (1946) [shown], Jake Chapman’s The Marriage of Reason & Squalor (2009), and several issues of the ephemeral Archigram (1960s).

Collection Overview

The collection’s aim is two-fold: to maintain the momentum established by Perkins in collecting canonical architecture works, and, to acquire contemporary materials that further distinguish the Fisher while safeguarding these unique works for the future. Endowments make the ongoing development of this collection possible, without having to compromise or choose between its development and that of our regular collections.

Holding Location