Modern Hospitals and Cultural Heritage





Modern Movement, Modern architecture, Modern housing


The decades between 1950 and 1980 mark the heydays of modern hospital architecture. It represents an ideal merger between Modernism and medicine and a highly specific approach to health and illness as medical qualities. Since the 1990s, public health experts have recognized that aspects that have been discarded both by medicine and by modern architecture should be re-integrated in all policies that target health: the modern hospital has become a relic of the past. This essay is a plea to incorporate the changing views on health and illness in the value assessment of the modern hospital.

How to Cite

Wagenaar, C. (2021). Modern Hospitals and Cultural Heritage. Docomomo Journal, (62), 36–43.







Author Biography

Cor Wagenaar, University of Groningen

(1960) Full professor in the history and theory of architecture and urbanism at the University of Groningen, head of the expertise center architecture, urbanism and health ( and president of the scientific board of the European Network Architecture for Health (


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