Blog Archive


London’s best bookshops for the art lover

londonbooks2 Thought it was about time that we did a few London recommendations here at pipe. We do after all host a category that suggests that we are here to recommend things, and since we are London based we thought of doing a little list of our favourite great London bookshops for  art and culture.
The list runs in no particular order other than the order: what we came to think of when putting the list together; so enjoy:
One of the nicest little bookshops in London is Lutyens & Rubinstein in Notting Hill. The small two floor shop has a bit of everything, but specialises in children's books, art and poetry. According to their homepage, “the core stock was put together by canvassing hundreds of readers – writers, publishing contacts, friends (both adult and children) about which books they would most like to find in a bookshop. Every book stocked has its place because somebody loves it and has recommended it”. A concept that we at Pipe think should be used more often, it makes the store a bit of a treasure chest for any real book lover. The bookshop also encourages its visitors to have a cup of coffee while browsing around its shelves. Last time we were there we were astonished by their great selection of hard to find Edward Gorey books.
Lutyens & Rubinstein
21 Kensington Park Road

Serpentine Gallery in Kensington Gardens, Hyde Park has one of the best art bookshops in London. It's small but well stocked and has a wide range of international publications. Its owner is Koenig Books, Europe’s largest independent bookshop. Koenig Books can also be found at 80 Charing Cross Road with a selection of highlights from the Serpentine including a department of special offers. Another of our favourite bookshops is the one in Whitechapel Gallery, which surprisingly  turns out to be managed by Koenig books as well.
Serpentine Gallery
Kensington Gardens
Whitechapel Gallery
77-82 Whitechapel High Street

Camden Arts Centre is a north London gallery with a bookshop that hosts an interesting selection. The shop sells limited artist's editions as well as many rare publications. It is great for gifts, we have picked up a lot of interesting and quite rare presents here, (the latest being: Tormented Hope, Nine Hypochondriac Lives, by Brian Dillon). Its also at the Camden Arts Centre that Pipe stock up on many art magazines. A big plus is the café right next to the shop. They serve great coffee and in the summer their garden is an oasis away from the ever-so busy Finchley Road.
Camden Arts Centre
Corner of Finchley Road and Arkwright Road
A few blocks down from the Camden Arts Centre, in West Hampstead, lies the independent bookshop, West End Books. This little gem has a great collection of coffee-table art books among hard to find editions and staff recommendations.
West End Books
277 West End Lane
A quite big independent bookshop is the, Muswell Hill Bookshop. On the corner around from the Broadway lies this  great old-fashioned bookshop. Apart from a rare selection of art books it also sells books about the local area. Why not pick up a read about the magic history of Hampstead Heath and Highgate Cemetery with their ley-lines and haunted pubs?
Muswell Hill Bookshop
72 Fortis Green Road
The London book chain Daunt Books, is another favourite of ours. All their branches, dotted around in North London, have a great selection. It is however their flag ship store in Marylebone that is the biggest one, and the one with the most extensive art book section. The store is hosted in a marvellous old Edwardian bookshop in the middle of the ‘village’ Marylebone road.
Daunt Books
83 Marylebone High Street
Foyles opened in 1906 and claim they are Europe’s largest bookshop with 5 floors and more than 200,000 titles in stock plus a wide range of gifts and stationery, a Cafe and a Gallery. On the 2nd floor you will find their array of neatly arranged art books, organised under several different categories.
113-119 Charing Cross Road
Of course there is so many more good bookshops with great art selections in London. It is however the ones we have listed that we know well, and that never seems to disappoint us. We are sure you know the kind: the ones that always have a selection of books that awaken an enormous ‘I have to have it’ –need.
Today, you can find almost anything on Amazon, but Amazon never lets you hold the book in your hand, and Amazon haven’t got staff recommendations on the shelves. No Amazon haven’t even got shelves you can ramble through, or book ladders for that matter. And as we all know, nothing beats a proper book ladder.
What are you waiting for, bring your favourite book tote and head to an old fashioned walk-in-bookstore...

No comments:

Post a Comment


We hope you are enjoying Pipe.

We welcome all comments relating to the adjoining article or post and will always endeavor to reply or acknowledge your views. Responses and debates are invaluable to what we do, so we hope you can let us know some of your thoughts.

Please don't however leave comments about anything other than the post(s) read/viewed. Anything irrelevant or what we deem as Spam will be removed.
Thanks for your time.

Kind Regards,