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Special Events and Projects

fashion history conference
Fashion
84th Anglo-American Conference of Historians
July 2 – 3, 2015
Institute of Historical Research | University of London


Fashion in history is a topic which has come of age in recent years, as scholars have turned to addressing what is chic and what is style over the ages and across different cultures. The history of fashion, and the role of fashion in history, is not just confined to the study of dress and costume, but encompasses design and innovation, taste and zeitgeist, treats as its subjects both people and objects, and crosses over into related disciplines such as the history of art and architecture, consumption, retailing and technology.

Dr. Valerie Steele will be a plenary speaker at this 2 day conference.

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Shoes, Jack Jacobus Ltd c.1930. Britain, gilded leather. Worn and given by H.M. Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother. V&A: T.473:1&2-1997. © Victoria & Albert Museum.
The Power of Gold
Costume Society UK
July 3 – 5, 2015
Victoria & Albert Museum | London, UK


This year, the Costume Society UK conference will explore the power of the use of gold in fashion and dress, including issues of status, symbolism and cultural meanings, fashion's fascination with gold, and more.

Colleen Hill, MFIT associate curator of accessories, will give the paper "Fashioning the Ever After: Gold Dress in Fairy Tales" on July 5.

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Photo by Aaron Corbett.
Fashion Comes of Age in the City of Light
Parisian Market Reception
August 6, 2015 | 6pm
Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute | Utica, NY


Paris has been the capital of fashion for more than 400 years. Even today, with the rise of other world cities like New York and Shanghai, Paris remains preeminent for fashion. To understand what makes Paris special, it is necessary to look at the period known as the Belle Époque, because the later 19th century was a key period in fashion history, art history, and the history of Paris.

Valerie Steele will explore the connections between fashion and modernity, which fascinated nineteenth-century artists and poets. The modern city provided numerous arenas for fashionable display, such as the new opera, the boulevards, and the couture atelier. There was a veritable retail revolution, with the rise of the department store, as well as a burgeoning fashion press, which also had artistic and literary effects. The image of the Parisienne, the New Woman, and the dandy became iconic figures. Following her presentation, Steele will be available to sign copies of her book Paris Fashion: A Cultural History.

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Past Workshops


Cross-Pollination
Cross-Pollination: Masterpieces of the Collections
Online event


This workshop was organized by The Museum at FIT in conjunction with Mexico’s Atelier Romo and the Sala de Arte Publico Siqueiros (SAPS). Under the mentorship of artist Sebastian Romo and Tanya Melendez, MFIT’s curator of education, students from FIT and Atelier Romo interpreted MFIT’s costume collection and SAPS’ murals. Results are published via the link above.




Cross Pollination Eco Fashion
Cross-Pollination: Eco-Fashion
Online event


Students from FIT and the Mexican school CENTRO shared their skills, diverse perspectives and interpretations of the MFIT exhibition Eco-Fashion: Going Green.

In the summer of 2010, The Museum at FIT invited five students from each institution to investigate ecological sustainability in fashion and what that means to them. The two teams of students were then asked to work together to develop a joint project that would reflect their discoveries and conclusions...
This workshop was organized in collaboration with the Mexican Cultural Institute of New York and Centro de diseño, cine y television. It was made possible in part through funding by the FIT Student-Faculty Corporation.




cross polination
Cross-Pollination: Fashion & Politics
Online event


Students from FIT and the Mexican school CENTRO shared their diverse skills and perspectives in order to help each other arrive at interpretations of the MFIT exhibition Fashion & Politics. The results of this online collaboration are published here on MFIT’s website. Organized in collaboration with the Mexican Cultural Institute of New York.


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