The Warburg Institute Archive is open to all researchers with a demonstrable interest in the collection. Visits are by appointment only and arranged on a first-come-first-served basis.
We can only accommodate a limited number of readers at any one time and recommend to book at least two weeks in advance. Visitors from outside London should make a booking before fixing any travel arrangements.
During the Warburg Renaissance redevelopment project (July 2022-December 2023), the Archive has moved temporarily to the University of London's Stewart House, 32 Russell Square, London WC1B 5DN, a five minute walk from the Institute.
Visitors can consult Archive material in the Stewart House Reading Room. Appointments to use the collections must be arranged by email.
On your first visit, please go to the Warburg Institute first in order to register for a reader's card before coming to Stewart House.
The Archive is open Monday - Friday 10.00am - 5.00pm.
Working in the Archive
If you are using the collections for more than half a day, you will first need to obtain a Library reader's card. Please ask for this at Reception. Upon arrival in the Archive, you can consult the paper-based catalogues of the various sections of our holdings to order items for study.
No food or drink may be brought into the Archive and you may only use a pencil and/or your laptop to take notes. For our rules concerning photography, please see below.
Making the most of the Archive
The material held in the Archive varies greatly in nature. Large parts of Aby Warburg's working papers and of the Institute's correspondence pre-1933 are in German, some handwritten, partly in German Current script.
To make good use of your time in the Archive, it is essential to have a good knowledge of the published works by the authors you are interested in and of the existing literature about the material you want to consult.
How to quote archival material
The Archive is currently organised into four main sections.
I. Material relating to the library in Hamburg and in London
III.-IV. Aby Warburg’s Papers
Quotations should be as follows:
WIA [for Warburg Institute Archive], complete catalogue number, title.
e.g. WIA, III.53.2. ‘Bildniskunst und florentinisches Bürgertum’, Leipzig 1902, Presentation Copy, inscribed to F. Saxl, 12 March 1914, p.7.
WIA, GC [General Correspondence], F. Saxl to A. Warburg, 12 April 1929.
WIA, FC [Family Correspondence], A. Warburg to Max M. Warburg, 5 April 1908.
Conditions of use
Material, whether text or images, is available on the following conditions:
1. That due acknowledgement is made in any resulting publication, whether as book, thesis, article, other photographic or audiovisual medium, of the Institute’s ownership and, where relevant, copyright.
2. That two copies of offprints or one copy of books are supplied free of charge, addressed to either the Director or the Archivist; the author of an unpublished M.A. or Ph.D. dissertation which draws substantially on material in the Archive is requested to submit one copy.
3. That any material prepared for publication on the basis of papers in the possession of the Institute which makes reference to persons now living will be shown to the Institute in typescript before it is sent to a publisher, and that the Institute retains the right to delete or amend reference to living persons in it.
4. That the Institute is indemnified by the person to whom material as specified in 3. is made available against any action brought as a result of publication.
5. That correct archival references are provided for any material that is published.
Copyright in unpublished notes and letters belongs to their respective authors or his/her heirs or assigns, irrespective of present ownership.
Permission to publish copyright material must be sought in writing.
Ordering reproductions of Archive material
We do not accept orders for reproductions of documents held in the Warburg Institute Archive, but we do accept orders for reproductions of photographs. The usual restrictions apply to photographs representing unpublished works in copyright (e.g. Aby Warburg’s ‘Bilderreihen’ or Mnemosyne Atlas plates).
Reproduction of archival documents is restricted to Archive users only. Users can request a limited number of reproductions of documents for study purposes while on site, not exceeding a maximum of 10% of every catalogue number or 50 copies per week. Reproduction of letters in the Correspondence Archive is at the discretion of the Archivist. Reproduction of fragile or unsorted material is not permitted.
Please consult with Archive staff before ordering.
We request pre-payment by credit card through the University of London Online Store for reproductions (see links below). Payment will generate an automated receipt. BACs payment for orders under £250.00 is subject to an administrative fee of £75.00.
For high-resolution digital reproductions of material from the Warburg Institute Archive: