Fashioning America

Grit to Glamour

Tracee Dundas Fashion Stylist|@fashionablyyoursnola

Grit to glamour can best be defined as having passion, perseverance and focus on achieving a goal. It is the ability to grind at a project with the end result being one of glamour and esteem.

Fashioning America: Grit to Glamour, a new exhibition at New Orleans Museum of Art is a dedicated fashion, exhibited featuring more than 100 iconic American designers and labels. The exhibition explores and celebrates the nation’s spirit of innovation and the diversity of the country’s fashion heritage. It spotlights, the untold stories of underrecognized and underrepresented designers, important contemporary movements shaping the industry, and American fashion’s resonance in global trends and visual culture.

The exhibit present American fashion as a powerful emblem of global visual culture, amplified by movies, television, red carpets, and social media. From dresses worn by first ladies to art-inspired garments to iconic fashion moments that defined a generation, Fashioning America conveys uniquely American expressions of innovation, highlights the compelling stories of both designers and wearers that center on opportunity and self-invention, and amplifies the voices of those who are often left out of dominant fashion narratives.

“American fashion reflects the complexity of America writ large, weaving together stories of innovation, immigration, independence, self-invention, and creativity,” says exhibition Curator Michelle Tolini Finamore. “The sweeping story of American fashion encompasses designers from all walks of life—from the rural to the urban, from the regional to the global—who embody history past and present and represent issues related to inclusion and exclusion. I am honored and excited to have the opportunity to champion work that has too often been overlooked by convention and hope that the exhibition captures the role fashion plays in reflecting the American spirit to the rest of the world.” This includes the works of Anthony and Virgil Abloh which show the crucial role that hip-hop and Black designers have played in American fashion.

In addition to the amazing designers highlighted, the exhibited celebrates five local designers with a mural-like display showing the grit, talent, and impact fashion continue to have the Gulfcoast Region. The designers are Sophie Omoro, Tabitha Bethune, Carolina Gallop, Suzanne Perron,

Fashioning America is on view at NOMA through November 26, 2023.

Fashion Stylist: Tracee Dundas | @fashionablyyoursnola Photos Courtesy of New Orleans Museum of Art

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