The standard work for the conservation of 20th-century heritage by more tha150 experts 


The built heritage of the 20th century concerns society in general: most of the buildings in which we live and work, that we pass on our way to work and those in which we spend our leisure time, were built during the last century. 20th-century architecture, including housing complexes, office blocks, industrial buildings, railway stations, cinemas, theatres, public baths and hotels, are the background of everyday life and the stage of our shared “past experience”. These buildings must not be considered merely for their aesthetic features, for they also have to do with physical well-being, social rituals and representations, as well as with associated concepts such as values and emotions. This publication was developed on the basis of these premises. It provides readers with the cultural, theoretical and critical frame of reference required to understand recent architectural heritage in its widest sense: as a historical, symbolic and aesthetic resource, but also as something that is endowed with social, economic and ecological value. It presents intervention tools in action: by analysing a vast array of case studies which address the main areas of restoration practice (historic and critical research, analysis of materials and technical features, identification of compatible new uses, regulatory compliance), it provides a methodology with which to develop concrete and appropriate criteria for any specific case. By examining theories and doctrines which have developed over time and thanks to the exemplary nature and variety of the selected cases, this work provides a historic appraisal of how intervention in the field of recent heritage has evolved over the past 60 years. This publication is for anyone interested in the space and the buildings that are part of the environment in which we live, and anyone who is or will be involved in the daily transformation of our cities: architects, engineers, conservators and professionals from preservation departments, concerned audiences and cultural tourists.

Roberta Grignolo, Bruno Reichlin (eds.)

The conservation, restoration and reuse of 20th-century heritage. A historical-critical encyclopaedia

Volume I

Approx. 272 pages, 190 illustrations, mostly in ­colour. Clothbound. 24.5 × 33.0 cm

Approx. SFr. 78.00 / € 78.00

ISBN 978-3-906896-07-6


Volume I: 

1. Heritage at the Intersection of History and Historical Narratives

a) History and Historiography as a Basis for Intervention on existing Buildings

b) 20th-Century Interiors

c) Polychromy in 20th-Century Architecture

d) Natural and Artificial Light in 20th-Century ­Architecture

e) Art and Architecture

2. Heritage and its “Construction”

a) Heritage as a “Collective” Construct

b) The Reception of Heritage

c) The Construction of World Heritage

3. Heritage and Authenticity

a) The Value of Authenticity

b) The Evolution of Authenticity through Inter­national Charters

c) Authenticity and Materials

d) The Challenge of Authenticity: the Borderline-­Case of Reconstructions

4. Heritage. History, Theory and Terminology

a) History and Theory of 20th-Century Heritage Conservation

b) The History of Heritage Conservation in Different Countries

c) Terminology for 20th-Century Heritage Conservation

Volume II: Actors, Tools, Practices

Volumes III and IV: Case Studies