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Construction on the new library building in the University Quarter will finish in 2022. The facade will be covered by a facade screen measuring 10 metres in height and 50 metres in length. Send in your idea for this screen which must be related to the Humanities, 31 May at the latest.

How do you compete and what can you win?

You can now contribute your idea for a theme to be integrated into the technical design of the new library’s facade screen. The screen will be installed in front of the windows of the new-build part of the library, on the side of the Nieuwe Doelenstraat and Binnengasthuisstraat. MVSA Architects will incorporate your idea, sketch or reference image into a technical design for the screen pattern. The winner, upon implementation of the design (see also the terms and conditions), will win everlasting fame and a lifelong right to borrow books from the university library.

Send your facade screen idea, along with an explanation on no more than one A4-size sheet to You can also send any questions to this email address.

Terms and conditions

  1. The theme must be linked to the Humanities, as the new university library is on the campus of which the Faculty of Humanities is the main inhabitant.
  2. The theme must be recognisable on the facade screen both in the daytime and in the evening. You may include a sketch or reference images to clarify the theme or to serve as inspiration, although this is not required. The architect will render your design or theme.
  3. The facade screen will be constructed in bronze and will therefore not have any colours other than that of the material used.
  4. The technical design is precondition, the image will be integrated in the pattern.
  5. The winning idea, including any sketches and the theme, will become the property of the UvA. The submitter confers on the UvA the unconditional and transferable right of use, for an indefinite period, of any intellectual property rights associated with the winning idea, including the sketch and theme, and agrees to its free and unimpeded use by the UvA.
  6. No rights can be derived from the submitted idea, sketch or design/theme.
  7. MVSA Architects will incorporate the winning idea into the technical design. The theme will be submitted to the UvA's Executive Board for realization and the design, including the theme, to the Spatial Quality Committee of the Municipality of Amsterdam..
  8. In case no appropriate themes are submitted, the jury reserves the right not to select any of the submissions.
  9. Participation implies the full acceptance of these terms and conditions.

Jury and follow-up

A jury, consisting of a delegation of users of the University Quarter and the architect, will assess the entries after 31 May and announce the winner. The architect elaborates the highest rated theme in a technical design. The theme will be submitted to the UvA's Executive Board for decision-making after the summer. The technical design, including the approved theme, is then submitted to the Spatial Quality Committee of the municipality of Amsterdam for final implementation.

Visit our website for background information about the new University Library, or for the latest updates.