Internationally acclaimed dress scholar to speak at UGA

Internationally acclaimed dress scholar to speak at UGA

Athens, Ga. – Joanne Eicher, considered by many to be the leading researcher in the field of dress study, will provide the keynote speech at the Costume Society of America’s Southeastern mini-meeting on Saturday, Feb. 2, at the Georgia Museum of Art at 9:30 a.m.

Dress study is an interdisciplinary field focused on how what individuals wear or display on their bodies, such as tattoos, is influenced by cultural ideas, standards and beliefs. Eicher, Regents’ Professor Emeritus at the University of Minnesota, will discuss how fashion is a form of non-verbal communication, with specific emphasis on cross-cultural comparisons in Africa and Asia.

“For many years Joanne Eicher has been the lead researcher and educator in the field of dress study in the United States,” according to Jośe Blanco F., assistant professor and collection manager of the historic costume collection in the University of Georgia College of Family and Consumer Sciences. “She has set the precedent on dress research now and for the future.”

Eicher is the editor-in-chief of Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion, and editor for the series Dress, Body, Culture.

“Joanne’s interdisciplinary approach to research, mixed with her desire for students to incorporate personal experience in their writing, has made her internationally known in more than one field of research,” said Katalin Medvedev, an assistant professor in the FACS textiles, merchandising, and interiors department. “The impact she has made in the fields of dress, sociology, gender studies, and anthropology is shown through her numerous publications, totaling in the hundreds.”

In addition to Eicher, the day-long symposium also will feature Susan Neill, vice president of collections and public programs at the Atlanta History Center. Neill will discuss the hand-woven textiles of Mary Hambidge and other weavers of Rabun County.

Arranged in conjunction with the current exhibit, “Shaping the Silhouette: A Glimpse into 20th Century Fashion,” the TMI-sponsored symposium also will include presentations by faculty, graduate students and undergraduate students in the fields of fashion merchandising, art history and English on how fashion relates to literature, art, politics and social changes.

The conference is free, but space is limited. For more information, contact Blanco at 706/542-4886, or Christie Jones at jonescl@uga.edu.