2009 saw the start of the scientific and cultural project that led to the Inguimbertine being transferred to the Hôtel-Dieu. The project recognised the deep ties between the written corpora and the museum collections, both firmly rooted in the founding principles of the institution in the 18th century, when its founder considered that knowledge was shared just as much by music and imagery as writing. With a desire to preserve this constant link throughout history and following an analysis of the concept for the 21st century audience, it was decided that the Inguimbertine project at the Hôtel-Dieu must emphasise the unique and original characteristic of being a library museum in a building with remarkable architectural qualities classed as a Historic Monument.

The Inguimbertine in the Hôtel-Dieu is a combination of writing and images, heritage and modernity, offering all types of formats for recording knowledge in a historical framework reimagined to suit to modern tastes. It thus offers the broadest of publics (locals, adults, teenagers, children, researchers and tourists) a range of services tailored to 21st century habits.

The 10,000 m2 space offers:

  • a public reading service (the multimedia library) covering 1,800m2, which offers almost 80,000 documents, digital resources (books, press, cinema, documentaries, music, shows, games, and more), video games, an IT area, and work stations, all in an environment that preserves its link with the work of its founding painter and intellectual by displaying more than 140 pieces from the museum collection and heritage collection; this area was opened to the public in November 2017 and now welcomes almost 7000 regular members, with a total of 130,000 unique users crossing the threshold of the multimedia library in 2023;
  • a reference service for the ancient, local and study collections in a study room;
  • a permanent exhibition covering 1,800 m2, emphasising the concept of the library museum and presenting the masterpieces of the library and museum collections (fine arts, archaeology, history, ethnography);
  • a temporary exhibition room covering 230m2, which offers the public new perspectives on art, heritage and knowledge;
  • meeting spaces (workshops, conferences, showings, shows);
  • an emphasis on the remarkable areas of the Hôtel-Dieu (the sweeping staircase, the Hall des Donatifs, the chapel, the pharmacy, the board room;
  • a cafeteria, in the former refectory of the convent;
  • a gift & book shop, which brings added value to the Inguimbertine’s collections and allows visitors to take little parts of our fabulous collections home with them.