Behind the Model: Reconstructing the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition | Newberry

Behind the Model: Reconstructing the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition

From William Walton, Art and Architecture, an official illustrated publication of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition.

A Lecture and Demonstration by Lisa M. Snyder
Saturday, December 8, 2018

10 to 11:30 am

Ruggles Hall

Free and open to the public. Registration required.
Open to the Public

Reclaim the lost experience of navigating through the White City with this digital visual simulation.

Lisa Snyder will discuss the technology and research behind her rich computer reconstruction of the 1893 World Columbian Exposition’s White City. This combination allows interactive exploration of Chicago’s legendary exposition and enables unprecedented opportunities for teaching and learning. Using the model as illustration, Snyder will highlight both key features of the reconstruction and the archival resources that informed the project.

Dr. Lisa M. Snyder from UCLA’s Office of Information Technology (OIT) and Institute for Digital Research and Education is Director of Campus Research Initiatives, Acting Director of the Research Technology Group, and Manger of its GIS, Visualization, and Modeling Group. She has a Master of Architectural History from the University of Virginia and a Ph.D. in Architecture from UCLA. Her primary research is on pedagogical applications for interactive computer models of historic urban environments. Currently, with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Lisa is leading a team to develop VSim, a software interface that provides users with the ability to craft narratives in three-dimensional space as well as the ability to embed annotations and links to primary and secondary resources and web content from within modeled environments. Using this dynamic open-source software, Lisa and Tim Samuelson, the Cultural Historian for the City of Chicago, periodically present her reconstruction model of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition at the Museum of Science and Industry.

This event, funded by a grant from the Terra Foundation for American Art, is part of our programming in connection with the exhibition Pictures from an Exposition: Visualizing the 1893 World’s Fair. See it from September 28 to December 31, 2018, at the Newberry.

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Cost and Registration Information 

Free and open to the public; registration required. Register online using this form by 8 am Saturday, December 8.

Doors open half an hour before the program begins, with first-come, first-served seating for registered attendees. If seats remain available, non-registered individuals will be permitted to enter about ten minutes before the event’s start. Questions? Contact us at or 312-255-3610.