The bibliographic collection of the Fundação de Serralves was initially constituted by a Documentation and Research Centre (CID), created in 1987 in order to facilitate the research work necessary for pursuit of the activities of Serralves Villa, including exhibitions, guided visits, cultural tourism trips and art history courses.

The creation of Serralves Library, when the Museum of Contemporary Art was inaugurated in June 1999, represented a dramatic change in the scope and mission of its predecessor, the CID. The Library, now aimed to offer a public service and initiated a programme of acquisitions that over the course of 13 years enabled it to expand its collection from 9,000 to 35,000 titles, distributed across five main areas:

- Contemporary Art;
- Landscape / nature / garden architecture;  
- Artist’s books and publications (a unique collection in the Iberian Peninsula, that has already resulted in 30 exhibitions in the Library’s mezzanine floor);
- Documental Collections, specifically the Melo and Castro Collection (acquired in 2002) and two collections established at the time of production of two exhibitions ("Raymond Hains" in 2000 and "Porto 60/70" in 2001);
- Archives: in particular the Carlos Alberto Cabral Collection (a magnificent collection that documents the construction project of Serralves Villa and Park), the Photographic Archive (images of Serralves Villa, garden, farm, exhibitions, works from the collection and activities) , and the Graphic Material Archive (a compilation of materials produced within the framework of the Foundation’s activities - available soon).

Directed primarily to researchers, artists, art critics, architects and university students, Serralves Library provides an online catalogue of its collection. Members of the public may also register as Reader in the Library’s website, a statute that guarantees provision of the desired titles on a specific date plus assisted access to the Library’s documental collections.

The Library's books can only be read on site, with conditional access for those aged under 16. Any Portuguese or foreign citizen may access the library’s collections and services.

The Library services have the following opening hours:
- Reading room (1st floor) and Mezzanine (2nd floor): Monday to Saturday from 10:00 to 18:00.

In 2020 all the Library’s services are closed on Sundays and on public holidays with a fixed and variable annual date:
2020-01-01 Ano Novo
2020-02-25 Carnaval
2020-04-10 6ª Feira Santa
2020-04-25 Dia da Liberdade
2020-05-01 Dia do Trabalhador
2020-06-10 Dia de Portugal
2020-06-11 Corpo de Deus
2020-06-24 Dia de S. João
2020-08-15 Assunção Nª Senhora
2020-10-05 Implantação da República
2020-11-01 Dia de Todos os Santos
2020-12-01 Restauração Independência
2020-12-08 Imaculada Conceição
2020-12-25 Natal

Please be advised that the Library Reading Room will be closed to the public on the following days:
05 Mar. - after 1:00 pm

Free access to the documental resource
- Search in the online catalogue
- Wi-Fi Network (free)
- Reproduction, scanning, printing or recording of searches (see price list).
- Reference service (specialist support in definition of search strategies, in consultation with the online catalogue)
- Training of users in use of electronic resources.
- Reservation of documents
- Consultation of various documental resources (by sending a letter, e-mail or fax in order to formalize the request)
- Interlibrary loan.
Contact: for reservation of documents or consultation of various documental resources, send an email to

Serralves Library enables black and white photocopies of documents to be made. A self service machine is available for this purpose.

Certain restrictions are observed, in order to prevent structural damage in the books:

- documents with reserved access.

- documents in a poor state of conservation.

- Documents with special dimensions and with special material characteristics.

Copyright and author’s rights restrictions. 

Serralves Library’s readers are responsible for compliance with the limitations imposed by prevailing copyright and author’s rights legislation.

Reproductions for purposes other than individual research, in particular for commercial use, requires authorisation from the Library.

Photocopy - 0:07 є per page (A4)                                         

Photocopy - 0:15 є per page (A3)                                             

Printing of research performed in the on-line catalogue and the Internet - є 00:10 per page                    

Recording of research with provision of a CD / DVD - є 2:50
Scans (recording or sending via emailing) - FREE                

Implementation of searches at the request of the user, sending the printed results,
 via CD / DVD or by email - є 7.50 per search   

Please be advised that the Library Reading Room will be closed to the public on the following days:
05 Mar. - after 1:00 pm

The Serralves Foundation began collecting books and publications from artists in 1999 with the acquisition of editions created in the 1960s and 70s.
The Serralves Library’s Documental Collections incorporate collections of unique historical and cultural value, within the framework of national and international contemporary art.
On-line Catalogue.
This collection includes various categories, ranging from artists’ books to single objects.

Support this project.
Become a member.

Rua D. João de Castro, 210
4150-417 Porto Portugal