In honor of the re-opening of the Rose Main Reading Room in the NY Public Library this week, we’ve rounded up three museum-worthy libraries across the country that are just as beautiful on the inside as they are on the outside (and free to enter, too).
After being closed for a two-year restoration, the Rose Main Reading Room – one of the most iconic spots in New York City – has just re-opened its doors to the public. Come for the beautiful cloudy ceiling mural by artist James Wall Finn, stay for that old book smell.
Where: 5th Ave at 42nd St, New York, NY 10018
Hours: 10AM-6PM M-F. Open until 8PM on Tuesday & Wednesday.
Considered one of the most innovative buildings of architect Bertram Goodhue’s career, this classic Art Deco building was built in the mid-1920s in collaboration with sculptor Lee Lawrie, who created the sculptures on both the exterior and the interior of the building – including this Zodiac Chandelier above. The designs printed on the inside of the concrete ceilings are decorative stencil drawings, created by artist Julian Garnsey.
Where: 630 W. 5th Street Los Angeles, CA 90071
Hours: Mon-Thurs 10AM-8PM, Fri-Sat 9:30AM-5:30PM, Sun 1-5PM.
The stunning San Francisco Main Library features a multitude of commissioned works, including Constellation, a light sculpture by Nayland Blake, Authors from Latin American Roots, a mural by artist Enrique Chagoya, and Functional and Fantasy Stair and Cyclone Fragment (pictured above) by Alice Aycock.
Where: 100 Larkin St. San Francisco, 94102
Hours: Mon 10AM-6PM, Tues-Thurs 9AM-8PM, Fri 12-6PM, Sat 10AM-6PM, Sun 12-5PM