The ANBG Library is here for you

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Are you aware that one of the benefits of being a Friend of the ANBG is membership of the ANBG library?

The ANBG library’s first priority is, of course, to meet the needs of the ANBG staff and the staff of other associated organisations. However, the library has a large collection of general books that would be of interest to Friends. Specialist Friends interest groups such as the Growing Friends and the Botanic Art Groups are well catered for. The more general collection includes biographies of botanists and explorers, books about national parks and botanic gardens worldwide and a comprehensive collection of periodicals such as Gardening Australia. The library also has a valuable collection of botanical art works, which can be viewed at special exhibitions throughout the year and for research. The library catalogue can be searched. If you would like to join the library, please contact librarian Jane Black.

The Friends of the ANBG and successive ANBG librarians have had a rewarding reciprocal relationship for nearly thirty years. The Botanic Art Groups' members have greatly appreciated being able to view some of the library’s valuable collection of botanical art work every year. Each month, Jane sets aside a small collection of books which will be of interest to the Volunteer Guides and these are introduced at the guides’ monthly meetings by Maureen Connelly, as part of their professional development program. Jane also writes a newsletter for the Friends, Library Connect, which describes new publications and recent events, and highlights other aspects of the Library's collection. A summary of each Library Connect is added to our News section.

The Friends, in return, have been generous in their donations to the library.

The most significant donation to the library is undoubtedly Celia Rosser’s The Banksias, a three-volume series of monographs containing watercolour paintings of every Banksia species. The three volumes were purchased over a number of years and are stored securely in the library. Another valuable donation would be the two Banks’ Florilegium prints which were given to the library in 2017. They required some conservation work and reframing, which was paid for by the Friends.

Eucalyptus crebra  Melaleuca quinquevervia

Banks' Florilegium prints produced by the Natural History Museum, London and Alecto Historical Editions.

Photo: ©M.Fagg, Australian National Botanic Gardens 2019

The Friends have made monetary donations to the library, for the purchase of books which the library may not have been able to afford from their budget. Funds have also been donated for the purchase of more general books which would appeal to the different special interest groups and the greater Friends community.

The first Botanic Art Group Exhibition was held in 2012. Every year since then, a three-person selection committee comprising Executive Director Judy West, at least one Council member and another interested selector, have chosen an artwork from the exhibition and donated it to the ANBG. More recently, a photographic work has been selected from the Photographic Group’s exhibition and donated to the ANBG. These paintings and prints are displayed in the ANBG administration area, including in the Dickson Room.