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State Library of Western Australia

Home > Perth > Free | Libraries | Literary | Personal Development | Self Help
by MonkeyBoy (subscribe)
Artist, musician, composer, filmmaker, poet, writer, photographer, dreamer
Published May 8th 2014
Not just for bookworms
Perth's Cultural Centre State Library Of Western Australia
State Library Of Western Australia in Perth's Cultural Centre

The State Library of Westen Australia is excellent, with a world class music section.

fingerprint shop 4 floors library
Bird's Eye View of the Library Shop, from the Top Floor

The large five storey building has a huge variety of books and more, including an extensive music section on the second floor. An area is dedicated to children's learning on the first floor. As well as music, you can find poetry, art, theatre, theology and the like on the second floor. The third floor contains documents and specific information relevant to Western Australia, with no bags allowed on this floor. All in all, the State Library is packed full of interesting books from biology and medicine to science fiction, biography and horror. Basically, the library has everything you would expect from a library but so much more, including free film screenings on certain days and times of the week (currently Wednesdays at 1.30pm).

Ghostbusters Library corridor books bookworm neat and tidy
Neat and tidy, and full of books. It's not Ghostbusters, but I like it

Electronic information points and computers for library item searches are dispersed throughout the building, and the friendly staff are always there to guide you if need be.

Plenty of seating, window seating, lots of space, natural light, computers dispersed generously throughout the library, an area dedicated to children's learning on the first floor, music, poetry, art, theatre etc on second floor, 3rd floor contains documents and info relevant directly to wa
There is plenty of seating throughout the library with lots of natural light

There is plenty of privately partitioned seating for studying and more open seating for quiet discussions or group reading, with tables, lots of space and excellent natural lighting. The temperature of the library seems to be comfortable and appropriate for study all year round, and there is always somewhere nice and quiet to sit and read.

Computer area, sofas, free internet access
Free internet access, tables, seating and sofas

A large area on the ground floor is dedicated to providing free internet access to members of the public, and there are areas set aside specifically for regularly changing exhibitions of art, history and other topics. There are also sofas to relax on, with tables and magazines, or you can just grab a book from a shelf and read.

views from the library, window seat
View from outside of the library on the ground floor

If you need a break from being a bookworm, you can simply look up and out of the window. There is a lot of window seating from which you can watch the world pass by and the views from inside include the city and the cultural centre.

The Big Screen Perth Cultural Centre between PICA and the library
Have a break by the Big Screen

Alternatively you can take a bigger break; and wander downstairs, or get the nearly Willy Wonka style glass lift, for get a breath of fresh air. A Big Screen is also situated directly outside, between the library and the Perth Institute of Contemporary Art (PICA) for your viewing pleasure. Pretty good.

library in the present moment
'To live in the present alone is to fix the future' (Dennis Haskell)

Walking around the library can be just as rewarding as entering the building itself, not least for the architecture and the inspirational quotes that you might come across.

The prize of all history is the understanding of modern times
'The prize of all history is the understanding of modern times' (Frank K Crowley)

All this talk of the present and the prize makes me want to go and buy someone a gift.

Fingerprint Library Shop Light Shade
Fingerprint Design Light Shade in the Library Shop

The library shop is stocked with decent material, and sometimes they lay out tables near the library entrance, filled with second hand books and cheap old music scores.

Sunshine through the trees reflections
Sunshine through the trees reflecting off the walls of the library

Limits to the library include a minimum of eight books, and you can renew books once. The library is clean and tidy with good facilities, including toilets, water fountains and even a cafe on the ground floor. Paintings are dispersed through the library and there are various glass encased items that provide historical insights.

After visiting the library, there is a lot to choose from in the surrounding Cultural Area, including art galleries, museums and even a musical playground round the corner. Alternatively, if you want to head elsewhere, bus and train stations are nearby, and an underground car park directly beneath the library means that it is perfectly positioned for good access by all, including lift access to all floors.

All in all, a top notch library worthy, and one of my own personal favourite places to go to in Perth.

Call of the tortured and oppressed - View of the Library from the Art Gallery of Western Australia
View of the Library from the Art Gallery of Western Australia
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Why? For books, research, reading, study, free internet access, and more including film screenings and special events
When: Monday - Thursday: 9.00am - 8.00pm, Friday: 9.00am - 5.30pm, Saturday - Sunday:10.00am - 5.30pm
Phone: 08 9427 3111
Where: Perth Cultural Centre
Cost: FREE!
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