New Research Priorities and Growth (1963–1975)

The contemporary library building of the 1960s designed by Silvio Galizia. Reading area with a view of the courtyard.

In 1962, Wolfgang Lotz was appointed successor to Count Franz Wolff Metternich. Otto Lehmann-Brockhaus, the former head of the library and cofounder of the Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte at Munich, was appointed head of the library following Ludwig Schudt's untimely death. Along with his new position (from 1967 also research fellow and director of the institute), he inherited holdings of 60,000 volumes from his predecessor. To accommodate the growing inventory of books, he introduced a new shelfmark classification system which is still being used in the library today. The focal point of his research was the study of medieval art in Abruzzo and Lazio.

Wolfgang Lotz concentrated his research on modern Italian architecture, in particular architectural drawings. It was on his initiative that Richard Krautheimer was appointed External Academic Member of the Max Planck Society in 1965, as Harald Keller (University of Frankfurt) and Rudolf Wittkower had been before him in the 1950s. After his retirement with emeritus status in 1971, Krautheimer and his wife, Trude Krautheimer-Hess, settled in Rome, taking up residence in an apartment in the Palazzo Zuccari, where he lived until his death in 1994.

This period was characterized by the rapid growth of the institute: Not only did the number of books and photographs increase steadily, the number of staff grew too, doubling from 23 to 51, while more and more researchers made use of the library. The resulting shortage of space was alleviated in 1963 by the purchase of the Palazzo Stroganoff – funded by the Volkswagen Foundation – and the construction of a new library wing. The new library building, designed by Wolfgang Lotz in collaboration with Chief Architect Otto Meitinger (General Administration of the Max Planck Society) and the architect Silvio Galizia, was opened in May 1969.

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