- College level course with full college semester schedule of 15 sessions
- A comprehensive overview of how contemporary fashion developed, knowledge of key players, trends, cultural movements, major socio-political events
Over the past fifteen years I have met many fashion students and enthusiasts who have voiced the same complaint, that they could not find a comprehensive framework for learning about the history of contemporary fashion, that the world of fashion has become too self-referential and lacking in historical knowledge. Concurrently, with the rise of social media I have seen an incredible amount of misinformation spread online.
This is why we decided to launch the StyleZeitgeist Academy and its first course – History of Contemporary Fashion.
Everyone is welcome to sign up, whether you are a student aiming to get a head start in a Bachelors or a Masters program related to fashion, or a fashion fan who wants to strengthen your knowledge base.
In this course I draw on both my knowledge of fashion history that stems from deep research and years of reporting, and my teaching experience at Parsons the New School for Design.
The course will equip you with a deep understanding not only of the history of fashion and culture that surrounded it, but will also allow you to gain insight into the state of fashion today.
This college level, 15-session study will offer a comprehensive overview of the history of contemporary fashion, concentrating on the period from 1947 until now. From Dior’s New Look, through the decline of haute couture and the rise of pret-a-porter, the life and death of the avant-garde, to today’s conglomerate fashion, this course will examine how fashion has changed over the past 75 years, connecting a patchwork of designers, brands, and trends into a coherent narrative that will give the students a solid understanding of the contemporary fashion landscape.
The course proceeds decade by decade, tying together disparate fashion movements and putting them into a wider cultural context. From the haute couture of Christian Dior and Yves Saint Laurent, to Malcolm McLaren and Vivenne Westwood, to the French pop-revolutionaries Jean Paul Gaultier and Thierry Mugler, to Comme des Garçons and Yohji Yamamoto, to the Antwerp Six and Martin Margiela, to the minimalists Helmut Lang and Jil Sander, to the British enfant terribles Alexander McQueen and John Galliano, to Rick Owens; these are just some of the names whose work we will closely examine. We will also examine the work of designers that the fashion mainstream skirts, such as Carol Christian Poell, Carpe Diem, and Paul Harnden.
The course will be taught via remote video sessions on Zoom. Its curriculum is modeled on a full semester worth of studying at a higher educational institution.
Each of the 15 sessions will run for two hours, and will be scheduled to try to accommodate students in various time zones in the Americas and Europe.
Each session will be a mix of lecture and seminar, meaning that the students will be encouraged to actively participate in discussions.
For those in or willing to travel to New York City, the last session will include an in-person meetup at the end of the semester.
There will be assigned reading, but no written homework or a final project, unless you are willing to do one as part of the advanced study program.
Please note that the course is limited to 20 students.
Course price list:
Early bird registration (Aug 29 – Sep 5, 2023) – $999
Regular registration (Sep 6th – Sep 8th, 2023) – $1499
Advanced study* – $1,999
*Advanced study includes five one-on-one consultations with the instructor during and after the semester’s end, as well as completing and getting feedback on optional writing assignments, and a personalized critique of your existing work (design, writing, etc.).