The Gilded Life of Richard Morris Hunt

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Expected release date is 29th Oct 2024

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Celebrated internationally in the 19th century as America’s premier architect, Richard Morris Hunt (1827–1895) is best known for his opulent Gilded Age Vanderbilt mansions, including Biltmore, the Breakers, Marble House and other landmark works. Yet Hunt’s impact on American culture after the Civil War ranges far beyond his lavish palaces. In The Gilded Life of Richard Morris Hunt, historian Sam Watters reveals Hunt’s remarkable influence in creating institutions and conventions that transformed Old World traditions into his generation’s idea of an American civilization through architecture, interior design, sculpture, painting and the ardent advocacy of artisan trades.

Watters repositions Hunt and his 40-year career in light of new discoveries and connections made through his meticulous study of the Richard Morris Hunt Collection at the Library of Congress. Featuring 200 illustrations, including Hunt’s drawings, images he collected, portraits of his privileged New York and Newport inner circle and new photographs and plans, this dynamic biography follows the contours of American thought that shaped Hunt’s life and work among the ruling one percent.

By Sam Watters and Michael Froio, published by Giles Ltd., 312 pages, hardcover.