Avery’s Architectural Novelties

Avery’s Architectural Novelties

Architectural Novelties at the Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library

Avery Classics is one of the largest collections of rare architectural books in the world. Among its thousands of volumes are the first printed book on architecture–Leon Battista Alberti's De re aedificatoria of 1485–and over one hundred editions of Vitruvius, who wrote the lone surviving classical text on the subject. In addition to printed books, the collection also includes manuscripts, photographs, and broadsides that reflect the library's scope.

However, certain items in Avery Classics have distinctive forms that fall outside all these categories. Such items, which we will call Architectural Novelties, are best explained in images. This exhibition highlights a selection of items from the Avery Classics collection that are both comprehensive and eccentric in their treatment of architecture.

Exhibit Curator

This exhibition was created by Carolyn Yerkes, Curator of Avery Classics, with Brooke Baldeschwiler, Avery Classics Assistant, and Carol Pardo, Rare Books Cataloger.

Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library / 300 Avery, M.C. 0301 / 1172 Amsterdam Avenue / New York, NY 10027 / (212) 854-3501 / avery@libraries.cul.columbia.edu