Sanatorium Agra (2008 - 2009)
Agra is a small village near Lugano in the southern part of Switzerland. In the first half of the 20th century Agra became famous mostly because of its sanatorium. It was opened 1913 under the name of 'Deutsches Haus Agra' as a sanatory for patients suffering from tuberculosis. Soon it got an excellent reputation and was a place of political and cultural exchange. Famous authors such as Erich Kästner and Margarete Steffin, beloved of Bertolt Brecht were patients for several weeks. Photographer Bill Brandt was treated in Agra during the years 1923/1924. Based on his visit in Agra 1927/1928, the swedish author Sven Stolpe wrote his novel called "Waitingroom of the death". Hospital director Hanns Alexander was a well reputated chief physician. But then he founded a local support group of the german NSDAP and denied access for Jews which polarized the patients and the people of the village. However the swiss government didn't interfere. After the Second World War the reputation of the sanatory was strongly damaged. The hospital closed its doors in 1969. Over years the building decayed to a framework of gigantic extent.