Communicating “space and form?”: The history and impact of the journal Tér és Forma as the Hungarian pipeline of Modernism


  • Pál Ritoók Hungarian Museum of Architecture
  • Ágnes Anna Sebestyén Hungarian Museum of Architecture




Modern Movement, Modern architecture, Modern housing


In the interwar era, architectural journals were at the forefront of professional attention and had the power to disseminate the Modern Movement in architecture globally. The Hungarian journal Tér és Forma (1928-1948) took the lead to introduce international modern architecture to the Hungarian public, while continually reporting on the newest building projects in interwar Hungary. Virgil Bierbauer, the periodical’s long-time editor (1928-1942), presented the broad panorama of contemporary architecture and his followers from 1943 intended to continue his legacy even in wartime. The impact of the periodical did not halt at its cessation in 1948 but, directly as well as indirectly, continued to define 20th century architectural historiography in Hungary.

How to Cite

Ritoók, P., & Sebestyén, Ágnes A. (2018). Communicating “space and form?”: The history and impact of the journal Tér és Forma as the Hungarian pipeline of Modernism. Docomomo Journal, (59), 18–25.




Author Biographies

Pál Ritoók, Hungarian Museum of Architecture

(b. Hungary, 1961). Art historian (Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, 1987). Since 1987 he has been curator at the Hungarian Museum of Architecture. He has published various articles, contributed to catalogues and curated exhibitions in the field of 19th and 20th century Hungarian architecture. He is the chief editor of the six volume popular series Architecture of Hungary (2001–2004; second, revised edition, 2016–2017). He was one of the curators of the exhibition Light and Form: Modern Architecture and Photography 1927–1950 presented in Budapest in 2003, later in Helsinki, Rotterdam, Vienna, Dessau, Wroclaw, Győr and Pécs. Between 2015 and 2017, he was vice-president of the Forster Gyula National Centre for Cultural Heritage Management.

Ágnes Anna Sebestyén, Hungarian Museum of Architecture

(b. Hungary, 1987). Art historian (Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, 2013; guest student at Leiden University, 2011). Since 2015, she has been working at the Hungarian Museum of Architecture. She has curatorial experience in 20th century architectural history. She has research expertise in the history of modern architecture, architectural photography and cultural mediation. Her current research focuses on the editorial activities of the architect Virgil Bierbauer and his role in international architectural transfers.


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