Online Conference

Smithsonian – Will To Adorn: African American Dress and the Aesthetics of Identity

We will be hosting three sessions on the Will to Adorn: African American Dress and the Aesthetics of Identity, the multi-year, collaborative folk cultural research and public presentation project initiated by the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage.


December 11, 2013


1:00 pm - 5:30 pm EST


Smithsonian Conferences


Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access


1. Will to Adorn: Overview

This presentation will provide an overview of the Will To Adorn: African American Dress and the Aesthetics of Identity project.

Through the work and perspectives of museum, academic, and community scholars, as well as community-based cultural practitioners, including artisans and designers from across the nation, the project explores the diversity of African American identities as expressed through the cultural aesthetics and traditional arts of the body, dress, and adornment.

2. The Art of Style: a Visual Arts Curriculum for Middle School Students

In this session, participants will see and hear about the recent work of 5th / 6th graders at Akili Academy in New Orleans, LA. In after school enrichment, students have been exploring the themes of “The Will to Adorn” while making their own patterns, paintings and symbols. We will discuss inspirations for the curriculum and reflect on adapting visual arts projects for varying age levels.

3. Pass the Mic: Hip Hop Style to Afro Punk in Cleveland’s Fashion Culture

This presentation will highlight the Max Hayes High School’s journey uncovering Cleveland’s fashion culture through the lenses of Hip Hop Style and emerging Afro Punk culture. In addition, a brief overview of a preliminary proposal covering Trayvon Martin, the image of the hoodie, and the need for student-centered fashion inquiries will be included.

This session is for students and educators. Students can complete Smithsonian Quests based on the conference sessions and earn digital badges in recognition of their new knowledge.

All Online Conferences are free and open to the public. Registration is required to participate.

View more events from this category

Next Event