American Style Speaker Biographies

David Colman has written about style for Vogue, GQ, Vanity Fair, and Elle Decor, and about art, architecture, design, food, fitness, and film for publications ranging from Artforum to InStyle to The Wall Street Journal. He is currently a columnist at The New York Times.

Christian Cota grew up in Mexico, where the elegant style of his mother and grandmother inspired his love of fashion. He attended Parsons School of Design, and launched his own design company in 2007.

Holly George-Warren is the award-winning author of more than a dozen books, including a biography of singing cowboy Gene Autry. A former editor at Rolling Stone, she teaches arts criticism at the State University of New York at New Paltz and lectures on Western fashion at museums nationwide.

Pamela Golbin is curator in chief at the Muse de la Mode et du Textile of the Palais du Louvre, where her most recent exhibition, a retrospective of the great couturier Madeleine Vionnet, is currently on view. Golbin is the author of Createurs de Modes and Balenciaga Paris.

Colleen Hill is the assistant curator of accessories at The Museum at FIT. She curated the MFIT exhibition Seduction, and most recently assisted Patricia Mears in organizing the exhibition American Beauty, as well as working on its companion book.

Charles Kleibacker opened Kleibacker Studio in 1960 in New York City, catering to private clients such as actress Diahann Carroll and First Lady Pat Nixon. Once hailed by The New Yorker as the master of the bias, he is currently the adjunct curator of design at the Columbus Museum of Art in Ohio.

Dr. Van Dyk Lewis is an associate professor at Cornell University, where he teaches courses that include fashion theory and conceptual fashion design. He is currently writing his first book, which examines uses of ethnography in fashion.

Patricia Mears is deputy director of The Museum at FIT and curator of American Beauty: Aesthetics and Innovation in Fashion. Her other MFIT exhibitions include Ralph Rucci: The Art of Weightlessness and Isabel Toledo: Fashion from the Inside Out (co-curated with MFIT director Valerie Steele). Previously,  she was assistant curator of the costume and textile collection at the Brooklyn Museum of Art.

Caroline Rennolds Milbank has written about American fashion in books that include New York Fashion: The Evolution of American Style and, most recently, Resort Fashion. She curated the costume component of Art and the Empire City: New York 18251861 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and in 2004 was co-curator of the MFIT exhibition, The Couture Accessory.

Dr. Alexandra Palmer is a senior curator at the Royal Ontario Museum. A costume and textile historian, she has taught and lectured around the world. Under her own label, she has designed hats and dresses for retailers such as Capezio, Patricia Field, and Therapy. Her latest book is Dior: A New Look, A New Enterprise 1947-57.

Dr. Susan Sidlauskas teaches the history and theory of modern art at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. She is currently writing a book about the modernity of John Singer Sargent. In 1982, she curated the exhibition Intimate Architecture: Contemporary Clothing Design at MITs Hayden Gallery.

Dr. Valerie Steele is director and chief curator of The Museum at FIT. Editor in chief of Fashion Theory: The Journal of Dress, Body & Culture, she is the author of numerous books, including Fetish, The Corset, and Gothic: Dark Glamour. She has curated numerous exhibitions, among them Gothic: Dark Glamour and Love &War: The Weaponized Woman.

Yeohlee Teng was born in Malaysia and established her brand, Yeohlee Inc, in New York in 1981. Her designs are driven by thoughtful consideration of weight, texture, color, cut, and finish. Her work has been featured in numerous exhibitions internationally.

Eric Wilson is a fashion reporter for The New York Times. He began his writing career at New York Newsday and Institutional Investor magazine. In 1997 he joined Women's Wear Daily, covering the ready-to-wear, fur, outerwear, and designer sportswear markets.

Kohle Yohannan is a cultural historian, curator, and the author of Claire McCardell: Redefining Modernism and Valentina: American Couture & the Cult of Celebrity. He recently contributed to Rizzolis In Vogue: The History of the Worlds Most Famous Fashion Magazine

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