Graphics Collection

Currently, the collection encompasses approximately 1.300 original graphic artists' books and graphic portfolios as well as about 300 original graphic issues of periodicals.

The centerpiece of the completed collection, and also thematically defining it, are original graphic works of non-official GDR art production.


From 1986 to 1990, more and more artists from Eastern Germany offered their inofficially crafted original graphic books and journals for sale to the library. In this way, a unique, completed collection of experimental art conveying an impressive overview of the inofficial art scene of the GDR came into being.

In 1986 - back then with just under 100 stock keeping units - it was separated from the Rara collection.

Since 1990, also foreign artists' books were acquired. Thus, the graphics collection nowadays stocks an interesting range of French and Russian experimental books.


All works of the graphics collection are indexed in the SLUB catalog and hence also in the Karlsruhe Virtual Catalog (KVK). Journals are also indexed in the Zeitschriftendatenbank (ZDB).

The graphics collection is furthermore part of the specialized information service "Contemporary Art after 1945". Therewith, it is also indexed in the portal


Artists' books and graphic portfolios are provided for in-house use in the special collections reading room (level -1) only.

For conservational reasons, original graphic journals can usually not be borrowed since they are available in digital form.