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Symposia

PAST SYMPOSIA 

Cover illustration © Edward Wilkerson.
Cover illustration © Edward Wilkerson.
Black Fashion Designers Symposium
Monday, February 6, 2017 
Katie Murphy Amphitheatre
Fred P. Pomerantz Art and Design Center

The Museum at FIT hosted a one-day symposium on February 6, 2017, featuring talks by designers, models, journalists, and scholars on African diasporic culture and fashion. A provisional list of speakers for the symposium and Spring 2017 Fashion Culture program series included writer Teri Agins, stylist June Ambrose, journalist and photographer Dario Calmese, Professor Alphonso McClendon, designers Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs of Cushnie et Ochs, Dapper Dan of Harlem, designer Grace Wales Bonner, former model and founder of The Diversity Coalition Bethann Hardison, Professor Monica Miller, designer Mimi Plange, Professor Eric Darnell Pritchard, Professor Elena Romero, Professor Victoria Rovine, costume designer Jeriana San Juan, and model Veronica Webb.

This event was broadcasted online via Livestream.

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Proust's Muse symposium cover
Photograph by Otto, the Countess Greffulhe in a ball gown, circa 1887. © Otto/Galliera/Roger-Viollet
Proust's Muse Symposium
Thursday, October 20, 2016
Katie Murphy Amphitheatre
Fred P. Pomerantz Art and Design Center

The Museum at FIT presented its 16th symposium Proust’s Muse. The day-long symposium was organized in conjunction with the exhibition Proust's Muse, The Countess Greffulhe. Researchers from the United States and Europe discussed the connections between fashion, patronage, literature, and the arts in turn of the century France.

 

Susanne Bartsch. Photograph by Steven Menendez.
Susanne Bartsch. Photograph by Steven Menendez.
Fashion Underground: The World of Susanne Bartsch
Thursday and Friday, October 22 and 23, 2015
Morris W. and Fannie B. Haft Auditorium
Marvin Feldman Center, Second Floor

The fifteenth annual fashion symposium, Fashion Underground: The World of Susanne Bartsch, explored the creative links between Bartsch’s 30 years of sartorial self-expression and its influence on the global fashion scene. Twenty-one speakers discussed the impact and the influence that Susanne Bartsch has had on fashion and nightlife. Speakers included Simon Doonan (Creative Ambassador-at-Large of Barneys New York), Stephen Jones (milliner), and Peter McNeil (professor at University of Technology Sydney and at Stockholm University).


Global Fashion Capitals Symposium
Tuesday, October 13, 2015
Morris W. and Fannie B. Haft Auditorium
Marvin Feldman Center, Second Floor
 
The Museum at FIT held a student fair and fashion show, followed by a panel discussion featuring fashion designers and MFIT curators, Ariele Elia and Elizabeth Way. Participating designers were Ricardo Seco (Mexico City), Arzu Kaprol (Istanbul), Marina Hoermanseder (Berlin), and Nana Lee of LIE SANGBONG (Seoul). The afternoon session, held at the CUNY Graduate Center, featured three panels addressing topics of industry, branding, and media. MFIT director Valerie Steele spoke that evening. For more information, please visit the CUNY website.
 

The live-streamed fashion show is available to watch here.


Photo: La Source, Opra National de Paris, October 2011; Choreography: Jean-Guillaume Bart; Costumes: Christian Lacroix; Photograph Ann Ray.
Photo: La Source, Opra National de Paris, October 2011; Choreography: Jean-Guillaume Bart; Costumes: Christian Lacroix; Photograph Ann Ray.
Dance & Fashion Symposium
Thursday and Friday, October 23 and 24, 2014
Morris W. and Fannie B. Haft Auditorium
Marvin Feldman Center, Second Floor

The fourteenth annual fashion symposium, Dance & Fashion, explored how dance costume has inspired fashion, and how fashion designers have increasingly been creating dance costumes. Topics include Rei Kawakubo's collaboration with Merce Cunningham and Rick Owens' fashion shows featuring steppers. There were twenty speakers, including all nine contributors to the companion book to the concurrent MFIT exhibition Dance & Fashion. Invited speakers included Marc Happel, costume director of the New York City Ballet, designer Narciso Rodriguez, dancer Wendy Whelan, and artist and photographer Ann Ray.


A Queer History of Fashion symposium cover
Cover: Una, Lady Troubridge, portrait by Romaine Brooks (1874-1970). Oil on canvas, 1924. 50 1/8 x 30 1/8 in. (127.3 x 76.4 cm.) Courtesy of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC/Art Resource, NY.
A Queer History of Fashion
Friday and Saturday, November 8 and 9, 2013
Morris W. and Fannie B. Haft Auditorium
Marvin Feldman Center, Second Floor

The Museum at FIT's thirteenth fashion symposium, A Queer History of Fashion, included over twenty participants, more than any symposium we've held yet. Over the course of two days, an international array of scholars, authors, designers, and curators discussed historical and contemporary issues related to queer designers, icons, fashion, and style. It has long been recognized that gays appear to have a special relationship with fashion and style. However, A Queer History of Fashion was the first symposium to explore the gayness or queerness of fashion, and to examine the contributions made to the modern history of fashion by gay men and lesbians, bisexuals, and transgender people. Invited speakers included designer John Bartlett, Simon Doonan, Fran Lebowitz, and Hal Rubenstein. The full-length symposium video is available for checkout at the Gladys Marcus Library.


Ivy Style symposium cover
Cover: Men in “beer suits,” Apparel Arts Fall 1932, p. 139. Courtesy the Fashion Institute of Technology/SUNY, FIT Library, Department of Special Collections and FIT Archives.
Ivy Style Symposium
Thursday and Friday, November 8 and 9, 2012
Morris W. and Fannie B. Haft Auditorium
Marvin Feldman Center, Second Floor

The Museum at FIT's twelfth fashion symposium, Ivy Style, opened up with deputy director and exhibition curator Patricia Mears introducing the MFIT exhibition Ivy Style. It closed with a presentation by Claudio del Vecchio, chairman and chief executive officer of the ultimate Ivy style brand, Brooks Brothers. Throughout the two days, an international array of scholars, authors, designers, and curators discussed, debated, and celebrated the styles enduring popularity and its influence on contemporary fashion as well as the cultural and aspirational aspects of Ivy styles creation and allure.


Fashion Icons and Insiders symposium cover
Cover: Daphne Guinness wearing a jacket by Chanel, shirt by Daphne Guinness. Photograph by Kevin Davies @Z Photographic Ltd.
Fashion Icons and Insiders Symposium
Thursday and Friday, November 3 and 4, 2011
Morris W. and Fannie B. Haft Auditorium
Marvin Feldman Center, Second Floor

The Museum at FIT's eleventh fashion symposium, Fashion Icons and Insiders, opened with Valerie Steele in conversation with today's most inspiring fashion icon, Daphne Guinness. It closed with the consummate fashion insider, Glenda Bailey, editor-in-chief of Harpers Bazaar. In between, there were conversations with fashion designers, bloggers, and journalists, who provided insight into the inner workings of the fashion system. There were also lectures by well-known authors and curators, speaking on topics such as gay fashion icons, black fashion icons, and celebrity fashion icons, as well as historic fashion icons and insiders such as Marie Antoinette, Jean Paul Gaultier and Millicent Rogers.


Japan Fashion Now symposium cover
Cover: Moyoco Anno. Sakuran, 2003. ©MOYOCO ANNO/KODANSHA.
Japan Fashion Now Symposium
Thursday and Friday, November 4 and 5, 2010
Morris W. and Fannie B. Haft Auditorium
Marvin Feldman Center, Second Floor

The Japan Fashion Now international interdisciplinary symposium explored contemporary Japanese fashion from avant-garde to street and subcultural styles. Topics included the historic roots of Japans fashion culture, the role of uniforms and uniformity, the Japanese fashion revolution of the 1980s, the geography of Tokyo fashion, the rise of the young male fashion consumer, and the significance of cuteness in Japanese girls culture.


American Style symposium cover
Cover: Evening dress by Norman Norell, Harper’s Bazaar, March 1951. Photograph by Louise Dahl-Wolfe.
American Style Symposium
Friday and Saturday, December 4 and 5, 2009
Morris W. and Fannie B. Haft Auditorium
Marvin Feldman Center, Second Floor

American Style was The Museum at FIT's eighth annual, two-day symposium, held in conjunction with the exhibition American Beauty: Aesthetics and Innovation in Fashion. Designers, scholars, authors, and curators discussed fashion of the Americas and explored themes ranging from the diversity of the American fashion industry to the unique characteristics of New York fashion. The symposium also featured conversations with some of the most innovative American designers working today.

 
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