Fashion, Culture, Futures
Celebrating Black Bodies in Contemporary Fashion
June 17, 2021, 12:30-1:25 p.m. ET
Featuring photographer Kennedi Carter, model Aaron Rose Philip, and Co Founder of WangaWoman | CEO of ESSENCE Caroline Wanga, this program will explore how African Americans are represented across the fashion industry. Moderated by Jenkins, panelists will address how their work highlights a spectrum of Blackness within fashion, media, and popular culture.
This program is being held as part of the symposium, Fashion, Culture, Futures: African American Ingenuity, Activism, and Storytelling. Learn more and sign up to attend.
About the Speakers
Aaron Rose Philip refuses to be defined. Hailing from the Bronx by way of the Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda, Aaron gained fame on social media by noting the lack of representation of both trans women of color and persons with disabilities within the fashion industry. Represented by Community New York, she has emerged as a trailblazer, determined to reflect her communities as a model.
Aaron (pronounced A-ron) has been a catalyst of change by openly speaking about her experience with bigotry. She has actively worked toward an inclusive industry via her editorial features in i-D,Dazed, Elle, Teen Vogue, and Allure magazines, as well as Refinery29 and NowThis. Aaron was the subject of a profile in The New York Times, and was interviewed by the iconic Naomi Campbell for Paper Magazine. Her modeling campaigns include Sephora, Dove’s United We Stand, and Moschino’s FW 2020, among others.
technology, and commerce company dedicated to a global and multigenerational audience of more than 30 million Black women and communities. She also holds the position of chief growth officer for ESSENCE Ventures where she leads the company’s commitment to serving its community deeply via critical multiplatform content, digital and virtual offerings, and cultural events.Wanga has a passion for constructing, deconstructing, and reconstructing organizational culture, and she champions authenticity and thrives while she inspires. With a background in corporate and community leadership, her career has included youth development, grant-writing, community organizing, supply chain logistics, human resources, culture, and media. She is a highly sought-after keynote speaker, equity strategist, and thought leader, and has been named Top Executive in Corporate Diversity by Black Enterprise and recognized by Savoy as one of the Most Powerful Women in Corporate America.
Fashion, Culture, Futures: African American Ingenuity, Activism, and Storytelling is co-organized by Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum and the National Museum of African American History and Culture.
Principal support is provided by
Major support is provided by
Funding is also provided by The Keith Haring Foundation and One Smithsonian.