Chet Smolski, Rhode Island College


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Tel Aviv quickly earned the nickname the White City, and from this photograph (5 of 6) it’s easy to see where it came from. The city’s architecture is overwhelmingly in the International and Bauhaus style. The architecture is designed to favor function over form. The functionalism of Tel Aviv’s architecture compliments the socialist aesthetic of 1930s and 40s Zionist political mentality. The International style embraced in Tel Aviv is now understood to be a perfect match for the Zionist project.

The nickname “White City” is not without controversy, and debates over Tel Aviv’s double image as White City and Black City have emerged in recent years. Namely, the term Black City refers to the disadvantaged south.


Hatuka, Tali. Violent Acts and Urban Space in Contemporary Tel Aviv. (Austin: University of Texas Press, 2010) pp. 152

Mann, Barbara E. A Place in History: Modernism, Tel Aviv, and the Creation of Jewish Urban Space. (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2006) pp. 158-161


This object from the Chester E. Smolski photographic slides and publications, housed by the Rhode Island College Special Collections, and any of its digital surrogates are the intellectual property of Rhode Island College. This digital object is protected by copyright and/or related rights. The digital material presented here is licensed with a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. This content can be used, shared, or adapted for educational and scholarly purposes. For permissions to use this item please contact All uses must include appropriate attribution.

Creator 1 Role


Recommended Citation

Chester E. Smolski photographic slides and publications, MSS-0041, Special Collections, James P. Adams Library, Rhode Island College.


bauhaus, international style, tourism, israel, tel aviv, aerial, housing, residential