Library of Congress Open House at the Main Reading Room

Photograph inside the Main Reading Room at the Library of Congress!

Quick Details

Its ornate interiors and grand staircases, gold-colored ceilings and arches, interspersed with statuary and paintings, are as magnificent as any structure you will find in Europe.

Twice each year, the Library of Congress opens its magnificent Main Reading Room to share information about how the public can access the Library’s resources year-round. The first open house of 2019 is on President’s Day, and the second is on Columbus Day – and we will be allowed to take photographs inside this most spectacular part of the Library of Congress! Since this is one of the few days each year when they allow the public into this space, we want to give you a chance to see that whole venue from the ground up!

This is a very popular event, so in order to be among the first to enter the Reading Room when it opens at 10 am, we will need to be in line outside the entrance behind the Great Hall as early as possible. While we are standing in line, Washington Photo Safari founder E. David Luria will provide tips and techniques for interior architectural photography. We will concentrate first on the Reading Room and then move from the Reading Room to photograph the Great Hall and the Main Reading from above, looking down. We will then go outside and photograph the building exterior with its statuary and fountains. Emphasis will be placed on composition and lighting.

We will also get to photograph the multi-million dollar Stradivarius Violin, Viola and Cello that are on display in one of the exhibit rooms during this safari.