‘Undressing the Fashionable Myth’ Symposium

Beyond Model Myths

Emma Kadar-Penner

Myths surrounding models and the modeling industry are common and span a spectrum
of judgments. Criticisms are railed against the industry for its celebration of unrealistic
body ideals. The ‘ passive, sickly’ model body is also condemned for perversely
sexualizing underdeveloped girls. On the other hand, there is also a fascination with
the ‘ model life’ and many aspire to lead the jet-set lifestyle of the supermodel. There
is no shortage of documentaries and reality television shows that attest to the power
of the “ model myth” as a glamorous one. This paper goes beyond these widely
circulated ‘ model mythologies’ in order to analyze and discuss the part models play in
the performance and representation of fashion. Understanding the differences between
the various types of modeling jobs (i.e. catalog, runway, house, and fit) will allow for a
more comprehensive understanding of the model’ s role as collaborator, interpreter, and
muse of fashion. A model’ s interpretation of the fashion she promotes is, in turn, shaped
by historical context and informed by changing beauty ideals. Most importantly models
are the medium for the realization and promotion of fashion. In this way, models take an
active part in defining contemporary cultural life, giving form to the fashion objects they
represent.
 

Veruschka: Model and Muse.

Undressing the Fashionable Myth Symposium. Saturday May 7th, Robert Lagary Board Room, Marvin Feldman Center 9th Floor, Seventh Ave at 27th street.

This event is free and open to the public. To register please call 212-217-4319 or email gradrsvp@fitnyc.edu

 

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One Response to ‘Undressing the Fashionable Myth’ Symposium

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