Skip to main content

Research library

The Research Library is a small, professionally focussed research collection tightly aligned to the Gallery's permanent collection and exhibition program. The main subject areas are portraiture (including photographic portraiture), Australian biography and Australian history. The Library also holds a broad range of materials on international artists and art history.

Research Library Catalogue

The catalogue is available online.

Holdings are also listed in Libraries Australia, Trove and in OCLC Worldcat (Art Discovery Group).

Research Library External Access Policy

External access to the National Portrait Gallery (NPG) Research Library is restricted to visiting professionals and bona fide scholars by appointment between 10:00 and 16:00 Wednesday and Thursday.

Bona fide scholars are defined as those doing advanced research in the field of portraiture. Generally, it does not cover undergraduate students. Those writing relevant Honours, Masters or PhD theses may make an appointment.

External borrowing is possible through the Inter-Library Loans system.

Personal borrowing by external readers is not permitted unless special arrangements apply.

We honour the standard "Library of last resort" principle which permits someone to look at something not available elsewhere under supervision and with an appointment.

To make an appointment please phone 02 6102 7039
or email