Reception: 'Collegiate Fashion and Activism' exhibit

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Date/Time:Monday, 10 Feb 2020 from 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm
Location:Mary Alice Gallery, 2019 Morrill Hall
Channel:College of Human Sciences
Categories:Arts, performances Meetings, receptions
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"Collegiate Fashion & Activism: Black Women's Styles on the College Campus," with a focus on black women's everyday clothing and its connection to black student empowerment on Iowa college campuses. The reception includes a curator talk with graduate student Dyese Matthews and assistant professor Kelly Reddy-Best, both from the apparel, merchandising and design program. The exhibit runs through April 17.

About the Exhibit
The exhibition analyzes the ways 21st century Black women college students attending predominately white institutions in Iowa express their Black identity, activism, and expressions of empowerment through fashion. The focus is on Black women's everyday clothing and its connection to Black student empowerment on Iowa college campuses. Counter-story telling was used to make space for Black women's voices and styles in 21st century fashion history. Because the museum lacked documented examples of Black women college student's garments or accessories, the curators developed the exhibition using a community-participatory approach. Fifteen Black women college students, who are currently attending predominately white institutions in Iowa, were recruited to share stories through an in-depth interview about their fashion and style. Then, these same women collectively loaned 40 garments or accessories that they discussed during their interviews, which are on display in the exhibition. The Black women also shared images during the interview that they felt represented pride in their Black identity; 13 of images are incorporated into the exhibition in 36x48" prints. Through eleven themes, the curators explore the ways Black women represent themselves through everyday fashions in predominately white spaces within the highly turbulent, current social climate. This exhibition focuses on 2013 to the present, as there was a significant increase in activism involvement following the start of the Black Lives Matter movement in 2013.