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Alumni Feature: Christopher Richards

Christopher Richards is an alumnus of UF, studying Art History and African Studies. He graduated in the summer of 2014. While at UF, Dr. Richards was very involved with the Center for African Studies, regularly attending Center events, and was a FLAS Fellow for multiple semesters. After graduating, he completed a Mellon Postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Witwatersrand through the Wits Art Museum. He has held research positions and internships at a variety of museums, including the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History and the Museum for African Art.

Currently, Dr. Richards is an assistant professor of Art History and the Director of the M.A. Museum Education Program at Brooklyn College. He is the recipient of the 2017-2018 Whiting Award for Excellence in Teaching. He has published on a variety of topics including fashion, beadwork, textiles, and culture in Africa. To read more about Dr. Richards professional accomplishments, including a full list of his publications and awards, please visit his Brooklyn College faculty profile.

In addition to his role at Brooklyn College, Dr. Richards is working as a consultant for the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) as an expert on kente cloth and Ghanaian fashion. This position is connected to an upcoming exhibition at MoMA, which will be their first fashion exhibition in 7

Photo courtesy of Paola Antonelli

3 years. The exhibition, Items: Is Fashion Modern?will be open from October 1, 2017 to January 28, 2018. It will feature 111 items of clothing and accessories that have had a strong impact throughout the 20th and 21stcentury, and still have significance in society today.

Dr. Richards was brought in as a consultant on the exhibition to provide an overview of kente for their listening guide, provide a lesson on kente for an online course related to the exhibition, and assist with the installation and wrapping of kente cloth and the Chez Julie ensemble being displayed in the exhibition. Dr. Richards is excited about the exhibition in particular because he feels this is an important step in the art community towards recognizing Ghanaian fashion, specifically in terms of the significance of Chez Julie’s work as Ghana’s first designer.

To learn more, you can visit the MoMA website or read W Magazine’s online featureon the exhibition.


CAS News Bulletin- Week of October 2, 2017