The Mount: Edith Wharton and the American Renaissance


Kay Davis
University of Virginia
© 2001-2003


American Renaissance > Italian Influences > Landscape Architecture and Interior Design >
White City
> Significance

White City

There was perhaps no better illustration of the American Renaissance than the buildings designed for the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago.

While the architecture of the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition displayed a multitude of building styles and colors, the buildings of White City—including Richard Morris Hunt's Administration Building and McKim, Mead, and White's Agricultural Building—illustrated a return to classical traditions in American architecture.

Hunt's Administration Building
Richard Morris Hunt's
Administration Building

Designed under the guidance of architect Daniel Hudson Burnham, White City became an obvious example of the American Renaissance movement.

White City was the antithesis of the sprawling metropolis surrounding it and the Midway nearby. The classically inspired buildings symbolized order and unity in a socially and culturally diverse world.

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