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History

The School of Applied Arts has been evolved from the carving workshop, founded in 1880, at the Royal Hungarian School of Art Education. In accordance with the main stream of education the specialised literature of history of style and ornamental art formed a very large part of the library’s collection. In the year of the millennium the School of Applied Arts has become independent, when the authority of Royal Hungarian School of Art Education terminated, and together with the Museum of Applied Arts moved to the Palace of Applied Arts designed by Ödön Lechner and Gyula Pártos for more than half century. Along with the move the libraries of the two institution has merged, so the number of volumes almost reached 3000, while the number of pattern sheets – playing so important role in education, and the further education of the craftsman visiting the library – was near to 40.000 pieces

The journal of the School of Applied Arts, ‘Decorative Art’ offered an alternative to the foreign designs transmitted by the pattern sheets. The journal showed the works of the School’s teachers and students to serve as a model for Hungarian craftsman and curious non-professionals in especially difficult times, during WW I. This journal informed the public nationwide about the attitude and results of the School’s education, and by keeping in contact with its readers the School’s art education mission was able to realise itself in a way surpassing imagination. The unified library of the Museum and School of Applied Arts has been Hungary’s most important library in the field for more than half century.

Following restructuring after WWII the school was renamed as Academy of Arts and Design. In 1954 a part of the school moved to the building designed by Zoltán Farkasdy at Zugligeti Street, and the library was again divided into two parts: the book collection which moved to the Zugligeti Street contained the teaching material, and the literature of contemporary object and space design, and the reference material for the research of the collection, so the majority of design history works remained in the Museum. The two libraries have very strong ties since then, and are keen to expand their collections in accordance with – and by completing each other – the above mentioned centre of interest.

By the 100th anniversary of the School the education included the majority of visual arts, and so expanded continuously the library’s collection interest, reflecting the main course of education, including space design, object design and image design. Since beside design education our University provides opportunity to obtain educator and art manager diplomas, our library offers the specialised literature background for these courses, too.

In the summer of 2003 our library moved to the University’s main building to a newly redesigned central area: from behind a glass wall the colourful volumes of the reading room of a friendly atmosphere are enticing us to step in as one enters the main entrance of the University. The interior design of the new library area is the work of György Frank, András Göde, Balázs Kéry and Viktória Wehner.