A Queer History of Fashion: From the Closet to the Catwalk
September 13, 2013 - January 4, 2014

Curated by Fred Dennis, senior curator of costume, and Valerie Steele, director and chief curator of The Museum at FIT, with exhibition design by award-winning architect Joel Sanders, the exhibition featured approximately 100 ensembles spanning more than a century of fashion. Organized in roughly chronological order, the exhibition explored the history of modern fashion through the lens of gay and lesbian life and culture, addressing subjects including androgyny, dandyism, idealizing and transgressive aesthetic styles, and the influence of subcultural and street styles, including drag, leather, and uniforms.

The exhibition was accompanied by a symposium (November 8-9, 2013) and a scholarly, multi-author book published by Yale University Press, as well as a free public lecture series, exhibition tours, and an educational website, with the goal of helping to foster a climate of inclusion for those who have often been marginalized due to their sexual orientation, gender identity, or gendered expression. A Queer History of Fashion won three significant awards: one for the exhibition, another for the website, and a third for the publication. Special thanks to The Diversity Council of FIT and the Advisory Committee.

A Queer History of Fashion: From the Closet to the Catwalk edited by Valerie Steele, Yale University Press, 2013.
/// Winner of the 2014 Millia Davenport Publication Award from the Costume Society of America.