Issey Miyake, Fujiwara Dai. A-POC Queen Textile. 1997. Issey Miyake, Inc., Tokyo. The Museum of Modern Art. Gift of Miyake Design Studio. Composite image by Pascal Roulin

Twenty-six iconic garments, accessories, and issues from the fashion universe, spanning the early 20th century to the present, will be discussed in a daylong abecedarium on Monday, May 16. A dynamic roster of designers, curators, critics, scholars, labor activists, and entrepreneurs will explore these topics—one for each letter of the alphabet—in seven minute vignettes.

9:00–9:30 a.m.
Welcome coffee

9:30–10:00 a.m.
Q = Question: Is Fashion Modern?
Paola Antonelli

10:00–10:30 a.m.
A = Air
Tinker Hatfield, VP Creative Concepts, Nike
B = Blackglama Fur Coat
Dan Mathews, Senior Vice President, PETA
C = Cheongsam
Harold Koda, former Curator-in-Charge, The Costume Institute, The Metropolitan Museum of Art

10:30 a.m.–12:15 p.m.
D = Dr. Martens
David Godlis, artist and photographer
E = E-commerce
Maxine Bédat, Co-founder and CEO, Zady
F = Facial Hair
Sean Trainor, historian, writer, and educator
G = Gym
Sofia Hedman and Serge Martynov, curators, Museea
H = Hoodie
Kerby Jean-Raymond, Founder, Pyer Moss
DeRay McKesson, educator and activist, Black Lives Matter

Moderated discussion

12:15–1:30 p.m.
Lunch (on your own)

1:30–2:30 p.m.
I = Invisibility Cloak
Maholo Uchida, Curator of New Media Art and Design, Miraikan, The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, Tokyo
J = Jeans
Emma McClendon, Assistant Curator, The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology
K = Keffiyeh
Hala Malak, Design Critic, Co-Founder of Design and Flow and Kaflab Foundation, and Instructor at Parsons School of Design
L = Little Black Dress
Valerie Steele, Director and Chief Curator, The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology
M = MuuMuu
Mickey Boardman, Editorial Director, PAPER magazine

2:30–3:45 p.m.
N = Nose Job
Joan Kron, journalist
Michael Kane, plastic surgeon
O = Opium
Leslie Vosshall, Professor of Neurobiology, Rockefeller University
P = Prosthesis
Aimee Mullins, athlete, actress, and model
R = Rana Plaza
Carmen Artigas, sustainable designer, consultant, and educator
Mary Ping, Founder, Slow and Steady Wins the Race

Moderated discussion

3:45-4:15 p.m.
Coffee

4:15–5:00 p.m.
S = Syrian Lingerie
Malu Halasa, co-author, The Secret life of Syrian Lingerie: Intimacy and Design and Syria Speaks: Art and Culture from the Frontline
T = Turtleneck
Hana Tajima, fashion designer, critic, and consultant
U = Unisex
Hari Nef, actress, model, and writer
V = Veil
Grace Ali, Founder and Editorial Director, OF NOTE magazine

5:00–6:15 p.m.
W = Dutch Wax
Omoyemi Akerele, Founder, Lagos Fashion and Design Week
X = XS
Sara Ziff, Founder, Model Alliance, and MPA candidate, Harvard University
Y = YSL’s Touche Éclat
Kabuki, make-up artist
Z = Zipper
Troy Patterson, Contributing Writer, The New York Times Magazine

Moderated discussion and conclusion

6:15–8:30 p.m.
Reception

Whether we call them fashion, apparel, clothes, accessories, garments, or numbers, the items we wear are central to our lives, our identities, and the ways in which we relate to society and the world. Because they are so essential and meaningful, they have been the subject of countless studies and exhibitions, from equally numerous points of view—art historical, sociological, aesthetic, technological, and more. The design angle, by nature a synthesis of all these approaches, is the one MoMA has chosen for this event, and for the upcoming exhibition Items: Is Fashion Modern?