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Danish Building Research Institute, Aalborg University, Denmark


This paper is part of a research project that analyses trends in housing architecture over the past 100 years. The research aims toshow how changing norms and new forms of everyday life have altered our views on housing and have led to fundamental changes in housing architecture. In this paper the analysis focuses particularly on the kitchen. A hundred years ago the kitchen of the bourgeoisie and the middleclass was only used by servants and other employees. Accordingly, the design of the kitchen was not a task for architects at all. However, during the 20th century the kitchen became an important architectural focal point. In the early part of the century architects considered it a practical workspaceto beimproved through rational analysis. Later on the kitchen was seen as a space with great social qualities, and the informal character of the kitchen was developed and exported to the rest of the dwelling. Today the kitchen has become the central space in many dwellings, but as the dwelling is increasingly being rendered representative value, modern kitchens are designed with emphasis on their aesthetic appearance. They are “life-style kitchens”, which demonstrate the “good taste” of the residents and reflect their personalities.


Kitchen design, housing architecture, cultural trends.

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