Architecture at the service of care: France-USA Memorial Hospital of Saint-Lô


  • Donato Severo École Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture Paris-Val de Seine image/svg+xml




Modern Movement, Modern architecture, Modern housing


The France-USA Memorial Hospital in Saint-Lô, Normandy (1948-1965), is known as one of the most relevant French Reconstruction projects. It is the first important work crafted by the French-American architect, Paul Nelson (1895-1979). His humanist approach inspired a series of unprecedented, meaningful and technical architectural innovations. The organization of the new hospital, based on functionality and modernity; polychromic and artistic inclusion; extended high-quality work, notably the "claustra" façade; ovoid surgical rooms and technical equipment are testimonies to the major quality and innovation pursued in the Memorial Hospital project. Paul Nelson’s work brings into focus the rich and comprehensive relationship between architecture, arts and care.

How to Cite

Severo, D. (2021). Architecture at the service of care: France-USA Memorial Hospital of Saint-Lô. Docomomo Journal, (62), 60–67.







Author Biography

Donato Severo, École Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture Paris-Val de Seine

Architect and historian, Doctor in History of architecture - University of Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne. He is an HDR (research supervising) professor, at the École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture Paris Val de Seine. He is member of the EVCAU Laboratory and ICT – Université de Paris Research Laboratory.


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