San Francisco, California, May 6, 2017 — Academy of Art University honored Sarah Mower MBE, Chief Critic for Vogue.com, at the School of Fashion 2017 Graduation Fashion Show. The President of Academy of Art University, Dr. Elisa Stephens, presented Mower with the degree of Honorary Doctorate for her contributions to the fashion industry and fashion education, and for her support of emerging designers. Mayor of the City and County of San Francisco, Edwin M. Lee, recognized Mower with a Certificate of Honor that read “San Francisco commends you for your tremendous contributions to fashion education and advocacy for students and young designers. Congratulations and best wishes on your future endeavors!”
Mower is the Ambassador for Emerging Talent for the British Fashion Council (BFC), a position she has held since being appointed in 2009. She serves as co-chair of the BFC NEWGEN Committee, and campaigns to raise scholarships for students as a trustee of the BFC Education Foundation. Her involvement in fashion and art education includes a visiting professorship at Central Saint Martins, and the position of honorary fellow of the Royal College of Art in London. She has overseen the development of a generation of designers whom she met when they were students such as Christopher Kane, Erdem, Mary Katrantzou, JW Anderson, Roksanda, Simone Rocha, Nicholas Kirkwood, Michael Halpern, and many others.
“Sarah has always been enthusiastic and supportive of new talent,” said Simon Ungless, Executive Director of the School of Fashion, identifying the qualities and importance of what Mower has accomplished. “In addition to mentoring so many young designers, she is vocal in opposing the financial cuts being made in art and design education, which to be honest, is what interested me when inviting her to visit the School of Fashion. I am interested in forming conversations and relationships that have a long-term and positive impact for Academy students. My focus for the School of Fashion has always been to support our new fashion creatives.”
Her role in raising the profile of the British fashion industry within the global community was recognized in 2011 when she received the distinguished honor of Member of the British Empire (MBE) by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for services to the fashion industry.
Presently the Chief Critic for Vogue.com, Mower is an internationally acclaimed and renowned fashion journalist. She has documented and analyzed fashion movements through reviews for Style.com, and features for Vogue, British Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and British newspapers since her first job at The Guardian in 1987. She has authored six books: London Uprising: Fifty Designers, One City (Phaidon 2017), Chloé Attitudes (Rizzoli 2013), Stylist: The Interpreters of Fashion (Rizzoli 2009), Gucci by Gucci (Rizzoli 2008), 20 Years: Dolce & Gabbana (Rizzoli 2006), and Oscar de la Renta (Assouline 2000).
Each summer, Mower assembles a group of Britain’s foremost designers and creates free programs of classes, workshops, guest speakers, fashion shows, and exhibitions for The Wardrobe Department that takes place during the Port Eliot Festival from July 27th to July 30th, 2017 in St. Germans, Cornwall, England. As the curator, she produces an annual lineup for young designers, students and festival goers of all ages “with the sole objective of letting loose with creative experiments,” adds Mower.
The end of the spring semester is considered the busiest with final and thesis reviews, portfolio and collaborative project critiques. In addition, the outreach and scheduling of transportation and interviews for out-of-town guests from the industry including retail executives, recruiters, and media who are invited to San Francisco to attend the annual Graduation Fashion Show and Portfolio Review, and the annual Spring Show which is an exhibition of student work from all areas of study at the University. Even though recruiters visit throughout the academic year to see the progress of collaborative industry projects placed in the classroom, many take the time to attend the two Portfolio Reviews to meet with graduates presenting work and portfolios for job and internship placement, as well as recognize project and competition winners with awards and scholarships.
A second Portfolio Review was added to the schedule for 2017. While industry was welcome to attend, the main reason was to inspire all fashion students who were invited to meet the graduates as they offered insight into their design process for their final collections and projects, websites and portfolios. “A portfolio is what will get you a job or an internship, it is what you will need to show at any interview you have,” said Gary Miller, Director of the School of Fashion. “Each project indicates your own design aesthetic while pointing out how you design for different seasons, wearing occasion and customers.” Students were encouraged to ask their peers questions to help them better prepare their remaining academic stretch while creating projects leading up to and to include in the best portfolio possible. “The runway shows one side to what the designers do. The portfolio tells the complete story of the process of design along with the tangible skill set that most design companies are looking for,” added Simon Ungless, Executive Director of the School of Fashion. “The portfolio speaks to the personality and aesthetic of the designer.” The two Portfolio Reviews that took place at 2:00 PM and 5:00 PM before the 7:00 PM Graduation Fashion Show included graduating students from the following areas of study: Fashion Design for Womenswear, Menswear, and Childrenswear; Technical Design; Textile Design; Knitwear Design; Accessory Design; Costume Design; Fashion Illustration; Fashion Journalism; Fashion Marketing and Brand Management; Fashion Styling; Fashion Merchandising; Fashion Product Development; Visual Merchandising, and Jewelry & Metal Arts
Sara Kozlowski, Director of Education and Professional Development for the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA), manages the educational initiatives for the CFDA and is dedicated to supporting and creating opportunities for emerging design talent. She accepted the invitation from Ungless to join him and Sarah Mower in a discussion with the students, tour the facilities and visit classrooms, and to announce the recipients of CFDA Scholarship Awards as well as the graduates selected to present their work at the upcoming Fashion Future Graduate Showcase in New York City.
In her role, Kozlowski applies two decades of experience within the fashion industry and education to the strategic management of the CFDA’s educational initiatives that includes creating new programs involving sustainability, technology, creativity, and innovation for early emerging design talent. Programs include the new Elaine Gold Launch Pad, CFDA + Lexus Fashion Initiative, Eileen Fisher Social Innovator Award, CFDA+ Design Graduates and other fashion education-based engagement opportunities for all phases of design. Prior to joining the CFDA, she was a design educator for 11 years with academic leadership roles in New York, Shanghai, and San Francisco. She holds a Masters of Business Administration in Design Strategy [dMBA] from California College of the Arts, and a BFA in Fashion Design from Parsons School of Design where she was awarded the Anna Sui and Byron Lars Gold Thimble Awards of distinction. Her design experience began at Anna Sui followed by the launch of the label CAKE that was represented by Steve Alan and sold worldwide at over 40 stores including Barneys New York, Intermix, Browns, and United Arrows during its six years of operation.
Ungless began the tour at SHOP657, an innovative concept store that carries brands and products designed and produced by Academy alumni, students and faculty. Run by the School of Fashion, SHOP657 is located in the heart of San Francisco at at 657 Sutter Street, creating a collaborative platform for students to experience the real world of commerce while providing the opportunity to launch and promote their fashion products.
The tour of the School of Fashion at 625 Polk Street included a Fashion Styling class where Mower and Kozlowski reviewed final projects. The MFA Design Studio, Knitwear Labs, and Textile Labs mimic professional design studios and include state of the art equipment. Ungless enjoys giving tours and wants the industry to see firsthand how the School of Fashion prepares students to be effective team members equipped with the skills and collaborative mind to keep them in demand for job placement. The tour ended at the fifth floor BFA Design Studio that many have said resembles a Parisian atelier due to the high ceiling and tall windows. The area was unusually quiet as students had finished alterations for the show and were now part of the eager audience waiting for Ungless to introduce Mower and Kozlowski. The discussion focused on the rapidly changing fashion landscape that our industry has become, global opportunity preparedness, and how to design a sustainable career for oneself with time allotted afterwards for questions.
Student Award and Scholarship Announcements
“Thank you for your student submissions across the newly reimagined CFDA Scholarship Program. We were very impressed by the creativity and originality expressed within portfolios this year and it was a very difficult decision to select finalists. Marking the first year of shifting to graduate study the responses to the new Geoffrey Beene Design Scholarship Award were imaginative, deeply researched and developed. Within the Liz Claiborne Design Scholarship Award, the thoughtful responses to sustainable systems, and range of thinking around new fashion models made choosing especially challenging,” explained Kozlowski. “The range of unique design identities and specializations displayed in the primary CFDA Scholarship Award was also recognized with strong submissions across Womens, Mens, Children’s, Accessories, Textiles, and Knitwear! I mean these words sincerely this year’s submissions were really strong. So much so, that two additional finalists were selected for the CFDA Scholarship for a total of eight.”
The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) and the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) present the Fashion Future Graduate Showcase (FFGS), featuring up to 100 top fashion graduates from Fashion Institute of Technology, Parsons School of Design, and Pratt Institute in New York. Additionally, the program invited Providence’s Rhode Island School of Design, and San Francisco’s Academy of Art University to join the inaugural showcase. The CFDA and NYCEDC recognize the vital need to support fashion graduates’ transition from education to career development. FFGS will connect exemplary graduates to professional opportunities across all design specializations including Apparel, Accessories, Jewelry, Textiles/Materials, Technical Design, and relevant emerging career pathways such as sustainable fashion. 14 Academy of Art University School of Fashion students were selected. The event is set from May 23-24 at Center 415, an AES NYC Event Space, in Manhattan.
Carly Dean, MFA Textile Design
Laura Hidaka, BFA Fashion Design
Bom Kim, MFA Fashion Design
Dina Marie Lam, MFA Fashion Design
Brandi Puckett, BFA Fashion Design
Aastha Shah, BFA Fashion Design
Eden Slezin, MFA Fashion Design
Dagny Steindorsdottir, BFA Fashion Design
Bowen Tian, BFA Fashion Design
Christina Miyagi, BFA Textile Design
Amanda Velasquez, BFA Fashion Design
Jessica V. Wijaya, BFA Fashion Design
Hailun Zhou, BFA Fashion Design
Jiran Xia, BFA Fashion Design
Szu-Yi Chen, MFA Fashion Design
The Fashion Future Graduate Digital Showcase on CFDA.com includes the 14 students selected for the curated exhibition, as well as eight additional School of Fashion students.
Sahara Aldrich, MFA Textile Design
Alvin Ang, BFA Fashion Design
Binan Han, BFA Fashion Design
Estene Marquez, BFA Fashion Design
Rheanna Oliver-Palanca, MFA Fashion Design
Erika Tompkins, BFA Fashion Design
Nancy Zhao, BFA Fashion Design
Xiaoyu Zhao, MFA Fashion Design
Kenneth Cole Footwear Innovation Award Finalists
Erika Tompkins, BFA Fashion Design
Ann Yunhui Zhang, BFA Fashion Design
CFDA Geoffrey Beene Design Scholar Award Finalist for the $25,000 Award
Yoonsuk Lee, MFA Fashion Design
Liz Claiborne Design Scholarship Award Finalist for the $25,000 Award
Susan Zienty, BFA Fashion Design
CFDA Scholarship Award Finalist for one of two $25,000 Awards
Pamela Toribio, BFA Textile Design
YMA-Fashion Scholarship Fund
FSF Geoffrey Beene National Scholarship Award for $10,000
Amanda Velasquez, BFA Fashion Design
YMA-Fashion Scholarship Fund FSF $5,000 Scholarship
Elora Martinez, BFA Fashion Merchandising
Hyun Ji Lee, BFA Fashion Merchandising
SURTEX® International Student Design Competition: designext®
Jiran Xia, BFA Fashion Design
The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute Design Competition
Inspired by the exhibition Rei Kawakubo / Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between, winners will be announced during The Met College Group’s event on Friday, September 1, 2017.
Yifan Xu, BFA Fashion Design
Maria Aalto, MFA Fashion Design
Snezna Anicic, MFA Fashion Design
Chang Sheng, MFA Fashion Design
San Francisco – Paris Sister City Scholarship Exchange to study for a full academic year in Paris, France at Studio Berçot
Amanda Velasquez, BFA Fashion Design
Ruth Reynaga, BFA Fashion Design
Cana Klebanoff, BFA Knitwear Design
San Francisco – Paris Sister City Scholarship Exchange to study for a full academic year in Paris, France at L’Ecole de la Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne
Jessica V. Wijaya, BFA Fashion Design
Amy Hsu Tzu Chen, BFA Fashion Design
2017 Top Fashion Journalism Students
iPad Mini Courtesy of Flipboard.
Winners were selected based on who had the most published articles on Fashion School Daily, the blog for the School of Fashion, and other media outlets.
First Place: Nivetha Sundar, MA Fashion Journalism
Second Place: Isabella Urbina, BA Fashion Journalism
Third Place: Kahea Montomery, MA Fashion Journalism
For the second year, Flipboard has generously supported this award. Flipboard, Issuu, Newco, Weebly, Tumblr, and Fyuse are partners of the Academy of Art University Social Media Center, and Fashion Journalism in the School of Fashion.
Academy of Art University Social Media Center 2017 Scholarship Award
Sponsored by Cross Marketing Public Relations
Winners showed excellence in understanding and in demonstrating the effectiveness of social media strategies, original campaign ideas, and strong presentation skills.
First Place: $1,500 Scholarship and Summer Internship at Cross Marketing Public Relations
Farnaz Dadashi, BA Fashion Journalism
Second Place: Summer Internship at Cross Marketing Public Relations
Nivetha Sundar, MA Fashion Journalism
Academy of Art University Fashion Journalism 2017 Scholarship Award
Sponsored by TRC Public Relations & Marketing
Winners showed excellence in core journalistic techniques, engaging and relevant storytelling, digital and social media skills, and strong online presentation.
First Place: $1,000 Scholarship and Summer Internship with TRC Public Relations & Marketing
Nivetha Sundar, MA Fashion Journalism
Second Place: $500 and Summer Internship with TRC Public Relations & Marketing
Kathryn Zerbe, BA Fashion Journalism
Third Place: Summer Internship with TRC Public Relations & Marketing
Paula Bojiuc, MA Fashion Journalism Online
Graduation Fashion Show
1. Fashion Design and Jewelry & Metal Arts Collaboration – Thao Thai, BFA Fashion Design, is a Vung Tau City, Vietnam native. Questions about ‘identity in contemporary society’ inspired Thai to create a collection aiming to portray a ‘universal self’ and diverse idea of beauty. The jewelry combined with the playful, deconstructed garments create areas that are covered and exposed. Naz Khorram, BFA Jewelry & Metal Arts, was born in Tehran and raised in Mashhad, Iran. In 2011, Khorram moved to Dubai to study graphic design at the American University based there. She relocated to San Francisco in 2014 to study Jewelry & Metal Arts at the Academy. She is currently the exhibition (student) chair for the School of Jewelry & Metal Arts to help promote emerging designers in the field. Khorram created metal wire body jewelry that resembles abstract faces and outlines of garments falling off the body to mimic the action of ‘undressing.’
2. Brandi Puckett, BFA Fashion Design, grew up in San Clemente, CA. Her collection is inspired by the art and lifestyle of Salvador Dali. Using circular shapes, textures and prints, she created vibrant optical illusions that reflect surrealism in her garments. Puckett applied pompoms from multiple cotton and wool yarns that she embroidered onto lace, creating a unique texture and fabrication. She was selected to participate in the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Showcase Curated Exhibition from May 23-24 in New York City.
3. Fashion Design and Knitwear Design Collaboration – Amy Hsu Tzu Chen, BFA Fashion Design, was born in Taoyuan and raised in Taipei, Taiwan. In 2016, Chen was a CFDA Geoffrey Beene Scholarship Finalist, and selected for a Summer Internship with Old Navy. After graduation, she will live in Paris through the San Francisco-Paris Sister City Scholarship Exchange at L’Ecole de la Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne. Inspirations for this collaborative collection included the 1993 Chinese drama Farewell My Concubine, and Peking opera costume but given a modern edge with asymmetrical cut and ethereal drape. Techniques such as felting, beading, embroidery, and hand-manipulated knitting were used to add depth and create lush three-dimensional textures to stimulate the sublime beauty in disruption. Chen collaborated with Xiaowen (Wendy) Zhang, BFA Knitwear Design, who was born in Henan Province and raised in Shanghai, China. Zhang used packaging material such as raffia and paper yarn to challenge the conventional idea of knitwear as just sweaters and create knitted design statements. She used weaving and holding techniques to create texture and volume and to emphasize the characteristics of the raw materials used.
4. Ann Zhang, BFA Fashion Design, is from Jinan, China. She attended London College of Fashion before moving to San Francisco to study at the Academy. In 2016, her textile design was printed on tote bags sold in SHOP657. For her collection, Zhang was inspired by fusion knots, and, drawings by Glenn Brown. Developing knot shapes and exploring how the knots altogether can become a fabric, Zhang played with abstract shapes in her garments and used piping to create structural accents. She is a 2017 CFDA Kenneth Cole Footwear Innovation Finalist.
5. Fashion Design and Costume Design Collaboration – Jessica V. Wijaya, BFA Fashion Design, was born and raised in Samarinda, East Borneo, Indonesia. In 2016, she became president of PERMIAS, a Bay Area Indonesian Student Association. For 2017, she has been selected to participate in the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Showcase Curated Exhibition, and the San Francisco-Paris Sister City Scholarship Exchange at L’Ecole de la Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne in Paris during the academic year of 2017-2018. Wijaya collaborated with Clarkie Kabler, BFA Costume Design who was born in Nassawadox, VA and grew up in Asheville, NC. Kabler has immersed herself in hat making, tambour beading, embroidery, and costume construction while living in San Francisco to attend the Academy. She works in the oldest hat shop in the city, Paul’s Hat Works, and interned at the Opera San Jose in the Costume Rental Program. The collaborators were inspired by photographer Wes Naman’s rubber band portraits. Distorted and asymmetrical silhouettes include beading with unconventional materials, such as rubber bands and zip ties, creating vibrant colorful textures.
6. Fashion Design and Jewelry & Metal Arts Collaboration – Jeanne Marie Sanguinetti, BFA Fashion Design, was born in Hattiesburg, MI and raised in Greensboro, NC. She collaborated with Ryan Hsiang, BFA Jewelry & Metal Arts, who was born in Taichung, Taiwan and raised in Shanghai, China. The 1980s arcade game Pac-Man inspired the designers to create silhouettes using digitize fabric with embedded LED lights and headphones in the shape of the game characters.
7. Jane Wade, BFA Fashion Design, grew up in Portland, Oregon. Using her non-destination walks through San Francisco with the infrastructure of electric cables, streets, and bridges as inspiration, Wade developed leather cord-bonding textiles engineered to hold the garments in her collection together.
8. Fashion Design and Textile Design Collaboration – Aastha Shah, BFA Fashion Design, is a Gujarat, India native who was a design assistant for Indian designer brand Deepike. While at the Academy, she interned as a product development assistant at 400 Brannan Studio, and has been selected to participate in the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Showcase Curated Exhibition in New York City. Her collaborator Peggy Kuo, BFA Textile Design, was born in Taipei, Taiwan, and raised in Los Angeles, CA, and while a student interned at Pottery Barn, as well as Old Navy as a concept intern, and BCBGMAXAZRIA as a textile designer. The elongated style of clothing worn in India combined with westernized street style influences the silhouette. Tassels are used as a variation of fur in two of the looks. Instead of printing the fabric that would then be sewn into a garment, the colorful designs were printed on garments that were half-sewn in order to lay flat while printing. The textile designs were influenced by a mixture of traditional Hindi Madhubani paintings and Mehndi Henna drawings, with colors from India’s Holi Festival, also known as the Festival of Colors and the Festival of Love.
9. Fashion Design and Knitwear Design Collaboration – Amanda Velasquez, BFA Fashion Design, grew up in Charleston, IL, worked as an Administrative Assistant in the U.S. Navy Reserve, and an Aircraft Armament Technician in the U.S. Navy before attending the Academy. In 2014 and 2015, she made the President’s Honor List and in 2016, was a $10,000.00 Joe’s Blackbook Scholarship Winner for Best Womenswear Portfolio, a YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund Winner, and received a womenswear design internship with Kenneth Cole. In 2017, she became a YMA-FSF Geoffrey Beene National Scholarship Winner for $10,000.00, and was selected to participate in the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Showcase Curated Exhibition from May 23-24 in New York City. She will study in Paris at Studio Berçot for the 2017-2018 academic year through the San Francisco-Paris Sister City Scholarship Exchange.
Shanice Ashley Green, BFA Knitwear Design, was born in Darby and grew up in West Philadelphia, PA. She designed knitwear inspired by marine wildlife for the collaborative collection with Velasquez. Jellyfish tentacles served as inspiration for the knit fringe trim. Green created a texture playground with the integration of woven and knit techniques. While the collection embodies texture in various ways, such as hand-coated denim and felting techniques with heat bondable fibers, Green used the knitting technique of plating with silk rayon yarns to create depth with an iridescent look.
10. Fashion Design and Textile Design Collaboration – Julie Kintner, BFA Menswear Design, is from Seattle, Washington. For the active menswear collection that she collaborated on with Yan Li, BFA Textile Design, Kintner focused on the idea of survival with just what is on one’s back. While developing the collection, she searched for big and bold shapes to reflect her inspiration, and experimented with draping using blue tarp and emergency blankets to create the silhouettes. Yan is from Nanning, Guangxi Province, China. While a student in the School of Fashion, Li interned with San Francisco-based brand Lia Larrea. For their collaborative collection, Li was inspired by literati painting and textures of the forest when creating the textile designs that she reproduced in techniques of discharge and silkscreen printing.
11. Vivian Cho, BFA Fashion Design, was born and raised in Hong Kong. Japanese ‘biker-girl gang culture’ inspired Cho’s graduation collection. The unruly youthfulness and chasing freedom are reflected in the elements of the collection. Top stitched judo belt details bring out the beauty of imbalances and toughness.
12. Estene Marquez, BFA Fashion Design, grew up in Sunnyvale, CA. During her studies, Marquez interned at Old Navy as an assistant designer. For her collection, Marquez was influenced by the architecture and history of the Basílica i Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família, a large Roman Catholic church in Barcelona, designed by Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. Sheer flowing organza fabrics were cut to create classic tailored pieces. Dropped proportions, A-line silhouettes, and laser-cut details were inspired by the cathedral’s architecture, while the color palette reflects the vulnerability of an art masterpiece being under construction for more than a century. Estene was selected to have her work on CFDA.com for the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Digital Showcase.
13. Fashion Design and Textile Design Collaboration – Alvin Ang, BFA Fashion Design, was born and raised in Surabaya, Indonesia. Ang explores the concept of optical illusions for his collaborative collection with Christina Miyagi, BFA Textile Design. He was fascinated with eye-catching effects and complex visual images that reveal hidden shapes and movement. Using classic shirt and fine-tailoring fabrics, Ang manipulated seam placements, check patterns and graphics. Ang interned at Marchesa in New York and was selected for the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Digital Showcase where his work will be displayed on CFDA.com. Miyagi was born in Tokyo, Japan and raised in Albany, CA. Beginning with the original pattern that Ang selected, Miyagi designed a mix of patterns to create optical illusions with some of the prints appearing to be moving and to change. Miyagi was selected to participate in the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Showcase Curated Exhibition that takes place May 23-24 in New York, NY.
14. Dagny Steindorsdottir, BFA Fashion Design, was born in Reykjavik and raised in Vopnafjordur, Iceland. Steindorsdottir proved dedication and hard work pays off when placed on the President’s Honor List in 2013, 2015 and 2016. For her graduation collection, Steindorsdottir was inspired by the circuit boards and cables found in electronic devices. She used actual electric cables as her main design feature, creating sophisticated patterns and structural accents. She has been selected to participate in the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Showcase Curated Exhibition from May 23-24 in Manhattan.
15. Erika Tompkins, BFA Fashion Design, was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. For her collection, she chose Portland as a source of inspiration with the rain and the vintage reuse-recycle movement as two focal points. This led her to a process of coating new and old fabrics with silicone. She used the molds of old garments to create new ones, playing with an idea of real and surreal. She is a 2017 CFDA Kenneth Cole Footwear Innovation Finalist; and her work selected for the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Digital Showcase on CFDA.com.
16. Fashion Design, Knitwear Design, and Jewelry & Metal Arts Collaboration – Joanna Jadallah, BFA Menswear Design, was born in Chicago, IL and raised in Orange County, CA. Her collection is inspired by her roots and Palestinian ancestors. Jadallah aimed to capture the beauty of her culture and tell the story of her people forced to leave everything behind. The rich texture and draping adds a fluid femininity to the nomadic menswear that influenced the designs of Jadallah’s collaborators. Qin (Samantha) Xu, BFA Jewelry & Metal Arts, was born and raised in Ningbo, Zhengjiang, China. She was inspired by ethnic jewelry and created ear cuffs using horn beads and metal wire. Cana Klebanoff, BFA Knitwear Design, was born in Queens, NY and grew up in Monmouth County, NJ. He was assistant to the creative director at San Francisco-based brand Joseph Domingo. Each year, President Stephens offers one City College of San Francisco student a full Presidential Scholarship to the Academy. Klebanoff was one of those students and for this collaborative collection, he was inspired by Japanese samurais, castles and nature. The armor of a samurai and the architecture of the castles are hinted at throughout the design and texture. Two of the garments were hand-knitted using a mixture of multiple plies of yarn crocheted onto the garment. He received the San Francisco-Paris Sister City Scholarship Exchange to study at Studio Berçot in Paris during the academic year from 2017-2018. The beading embroideries were executed by Jeanniffer Tirtamarta, BFA Fashion Design.
17. Bowen Tian, BFA Fashion Design, was born and raised in Huben, Enshi, China. She held design internships at Old Navy and the N.I.C.E. Collective. She found inspiration in Ernesto Neto’s artwork Humanoids Family, and Piff Piff. While the rhythm of life in contemporary society is becoming faster, her oversized puff garments with huge buttons and giant trim point to relaxation and whimsical laziness. In 2016, she received a CFDA Scholarship Award for $10,000.00, and in 2017, selected to participate in the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Showcase.
18. Fashion Design and Jewelry & Metal Arts Collaboration – Jiran Xia, BFA Fashion Design, was born and raised in Jin Jiang, China. While at the School of Fashion, Xia interned with San Francisco companies 1208 Studio and Lea Larrea. The inspiration for her collection explores the theme of harmonious co-existence of man and nature. Simple geometric silhouettes and floral prints, images of bird feathers and natural textures reflect the beauty of nature co-existing with human life. She has been selected to participate in the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Showcase Curated Exhibition from May 23-24 in Manhattan, and won the SURTEX International Student Design Competition: designext. Xia collaborated with Pei-Ling (Ann) Tsai, BFA Jewelry & Metal Arts, was born in Yunlin, Taiwan and raised in Shanghai, China. In 2016, Tsai was the First Place BFA Winner for Best in Category for the School of Jewelry & Metal Arts. Her inspiration to create the jewelry for the collaborative collection is based on Little Forest. She combined acrylic and metal for her contemporary looking pieces.
19. Laura Hidaka, BFA Fashion Design, was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. Having initially started her studies as an online student, Hidaka switched to the onsite program to attend classes in San Francisco. Her graduation collection silhouettes are inspired by traditional Hawaiian Kahiko hula skirts. Weaving, prints and appliqués are based on Henri Matisse cut-outs and his “Blue Nudes.” The embroidery and weaving for the collection were done by Claudia Tan and Virginia Yue, both BFA Fashion Design. Hidaka was selected to participate in the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Showcase Curated Exhibition from May 23-24 in Manhattan.
About Academy of Art University
Academy of Art University, the largest private university of art and design in the United States, is educating students for the art and design jobs of the 21st century. Established in 1929, the Academy is an output-based higher education model that provides an inclusive admissions policy to all students, but imposes a rigorous curriculum that requires the students to produce a portfolio of work that demonstrates a mastery of their field in order to graduate. Students are taught by a faculty of professionals from the existing marketplace, both online and on campus in San Francisco, who provide them with an understanding of what it takes to succeed in today’s business environment. The Academy’s hands-on curriculum produces graduates, who possess outstanding artistic and design skills—and equally as important, the ability to put those talents to work immediately after graduation. As a result, Academy graduates are ready to compete for and win the jobs of the 21st century in the fields of Acting, Advertising, Animation & Visual Effects, Architecture, Art Education, Art History, Art Teaching Credential, Automotive Restoration, Fashion, Fashion Costume Design, Fashion Journalism, Fashion Marketing, Fashion Merchandising, Fashion Product Development, Fashion Visual Merchandising, Fashion Styling, Fine Art, Game Development, Game Programming, Graphic Design, Illustration, Industrial Design (Transportation, Product, & Toy Design), Interior Architecture & Design, Jewelry & Metal Arts, Landscape Architecture, Motion Pictures & Television, Multimedia Communications, Music Production & Sound Design for Visual Media, Photography, Studio Production for Advertising & Design, Visual Development, Web Design & New Media, and Writing for Film, Television & Digital Media. Academy of Art University is an accredited member of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WSCUC), National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD), Council for Interior Design (CIDA) for BFA-IAD and MFA-IAD, CTC (California Teacher Credential), and National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB) for M.Arch. and B.Arch.
About the School of Fashion
Approximately 2,500 fashion students study under the guidance of experienced fashion professionals in the School of Fashion, which houses the following areas of specialization: Fashion Design for Womenswear, Menswear, and Childrenswear; Technical Design; Textile Design; Knitwear Design; Accessory Design; Costume Design; Fashion Illustration; Fashion Journalism; Fashion Marketing and Brand Management; Fashion Styling; Fashion Merchandising; Fashion Product Development; and Visual Merchandising.
The University works with international brands and recruitment agencies on internships and job placement. Graduates have gone on to such companies as Abercrombie & Fitch, Adidas, Alexander McQueen, Azzedine Alaïa, Banana Republic, BCBG Max Azria, Bill Blass, Blanc de Chine, Burberry, Calvin Klein, Corso Como 10, Chloë, Diane von Fürstenberg, Donna Karan, Gap, Kate Spade, Kiton, L.A.M.B., L’Ecole Lesage Paris–Atelier de Broderie, Liz Claiborne, Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs, Martin Margiela, Martine Sitbon, Missoni, Nike, Nordstrom, The North Face, Old Navy, Oscar de la Renta, Phillip Lim, Pottery Barn, Ralph Lauren, Reebok, Roland Mouret, St. John, Threeasfour, Tocca, Viktor & Rolf, and Williams-Sonoma.
Guests to the School of Fashion include Zaid Affas, Azzedine Alaïa, Prosper and Martine Assouline, Max and Lubov Azria of BCBG Max Azria Group, Yigal Azrouël, Geoffrey Beene, Mickey Boardman of Paper Magazine, Rose Marie Bravo, Alex Brownless of Arts Thread, Sarah Burton Creative Director of Alexander McQueen, Andrew Buckler, Julie Chaiken, Kenneth Cole, The Honorable Bertrand Delanoë Mayor of Paris, David Downton, Steven Cox and Daniel Silver of Duckie Brown, Patrik Ervell, Loulou de la Falaise, James Galanos, Lisa Smilor and Sara Kozlowski of the CFDA, Joan Kaner, Humberto Leon and Carol Lim of Opening Ceremony, Antonio Lopez, Fern Mallis, Alexander McQueen, Rosita and Tai Missoni, Angela Missoni, Margherita Maccapani Missoni, Isaac Mizrahi, Josie Natori, Ian Hannula and Joe Haller of N.I.C.E. Collective, Elisa Palomino, Laure du Pavillon, Lars Byrresen Petersen of Visionaire, Zac Posen, Oscar de la Renta, Zandra Rhodes CBE, Kate and Laura Mulleavy for Rodarte, Ralph Rucci, Nathalie Rykiel for Sonia Rykiel, HRH Princess Reema Bandar Al-Saud, Jeremy Scott, Carla Sozzani, Philip Treacy, Walter Van Beirendonck and Dirk van Saene, Dame Vivienne Westwood DBE and Sarah Mower MBE, Christophe Girard Director of Fashion Strategy of LVMH Fashion Group, Tim Blanks, Robin Givhan, Cathy Horyn, Suzy Menkes, and Joe Zee.
About School of Fashion Directors
Simon Ungless, Executive Director of the School of Fashion, graduated from Central Saint Martins School of Art and Design in 1992 and was awarded the prestigious M.A. Degree in Fashion with Distinction. He collaborated with Alexander McQueen on the first 10 collections shown in London and New York, and personally introduced Sarah Burton, Creative Director of Alexander McQueen, to the late designer. In 2002, he was named Creative Director of Member Holiday, a Korean-based contemporary brand, launching both men’s and women’s collections with 37 freestanding stores. His work experience spans fashion design, textile design, forecasting, brand development, and marketing for such clients as Givenchy, Paul Smith, and Versace. In addition to his duties as the Executive Director of the School of Fashion overseeing both M.F.A. and B.F.A. programs, he is the editorial director of the School of Fashion’s 180 magazine, as well as the executive producer of the annual Graduation Fashion Show and Awards Ceremony in San Francisco and the biannual fashion shows during New York Fashion Week. Currently, Ungless operates two artisanal design companies, When Simon Met Ralph, which focuses on apparel, and Blackened, which centers on accessories and home. Both projects are the culmination of his inspirational development work over his career.
Jayne Foster, Graduate Director of Fashion, graduated from The Royal College of Art with a M.A. in Womenswear. She has designed for a private label that showed in London, Paris, and New York. Her freelance clients included House of Fraser, Urban Outfitters, and Whistles. She created a collection of concept designs for Burton Snowboards for both the main women’s range and the younger B by Burton range, designed textiles for Hop Lun Lingerie, and her fashion illustration work has been exhibited in London galleries. Before joining the Academy in 2012, she taught design for eight years in London and designed for the British brand Monsoon.
Gary Miller, Director of Fashion, has more than 16 years of experience in New York and London as a fashion director. His design scope encompasses building and maintaining brand identity, initiating start-up concepts, reinvigorating existing lines, and nurturing ongoing successful brands. He worked as a Design Director for men’s sportswear division at Macy’s Merchandising Group in New York. Previously, he worked at The Men’s Wearhouse, Wilke-Rodriguez, Here and There (now part of The Doneger Group), and Michiko Koshino. He holds a B.A. in Fashion Design with Textiles from Ravensbourne College of Design and Communication in the U.K.
Sharon Murphy, Graduate Director of Fashion Merchandising, graduated with a B.A. from Ohio State University, and has held management positions in product development, sourcing, manufacturing, and fashion retailing. She worked for Esprit de Corp on domestic and international levels with a focus on the development of fabrics and apparel for contemporary, junior, and children’s markets. Murphy joined the School of Fashion as an instructor in 2001. She continues to work with Venice Collaborative, sourcing textiles and related materials for the group’s architecturally and artistically expressive residential projects in Venice, California.
Jinah Oh, Director of Fashion Merchandising, earned her M.B.A. in Marketing at Golden Gate University in San Francisco, as well as a B.S. in Clothing and Textiles and a B.A. in Philosophy from EWHA Women’s University in Seoul, Korea. She has extensive experience in international fashion and luxury brands. With Escada Asia, she developed business and market strategies, managed merchandising and buying for multiple brands, pioneered and initiated brick and mortar and e-commerce channel development. Later with Cartier, Richemont Korea Ltd., she oversaw retail operations and all aspects of retail marketing activities for the Korean market.
Iliana Ricketts, Director of Online Fashion, was appointed to Director of Online Fashion in 2014, Assistant Director of Online Fashion in 2009, and previously held the position of Fashion Department Coordinator since 2005. Prior to coming to the United States, Iliana had established herself as a recognized designer in her country of Bulgaria. She received her M.F.A. in Fashion Design from Academy of Art University. In 2002, she launched ‘ILYA,’ a designer ready-to-wear label sold nationally in stores such as Henri Bendel. Her line was also seen on the HBO television series, Sex And The City. In 2004, she became head designer of the boutique and golf line GGblue. Under her creative direction, GGblue became one of the most successful and fashion-forward brands in the golf and leisure industry.
Stephan Rabimov, Director of Fashion Journalism & Social Media Center, has ten years of experience in digital and print publishing, journalism, social media, public relations and marketing. He is Publisher/Editor-in-Chief of DEPESHA, and a contributing writer to The Huffington Post and Forbes International. Stephan has lectured at Johns Hopkins University and at The Museum at Fashion Institute of Technology. Stephan was also Executive Fashion Editor for FourTwoNine magazine since May 2011, and Founder of RABIMOV Public Relations Agency since May 2010, successfully launching Thom Browne, Rubin Singer, and Custo Barcelona in Russia. Stephan directly managed the opening of Nicola Formichetti’s pop-up store in New York City as well as produced runway shows featuring emerging international designers during New York, St. Petersburg, Toronto, and Vancouver Fashion Weeks. Stephan has been interviewed and published across dozens of publications, including The New York Times, Russia Beyond The Headlines Edition, Women’s Wear Daily, L’Officiel Ukraine, Vogue Russia, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, CNN, Yahoo Style, Examiner, and The Huffington Post.
Follow School of Fashion on Social Media
Official Flipboard Channel
Fashion Show Credit Sheet
Simon Ungless, Executive Director of the School of Fashion
Serita Sangimino, Vice President of Student Affairs
Marcell Rocha for Workgroup / workgroup-ltd.com
Stacy Maki and the MAC Artistry team
Jon Reyman for Spoke & Weal Salon
Cast Images Model & Talent Agency, JE Model Management, Look Model Agency,
Scout Model & Talent Agency, Stars Model Management
Academy Video and Live Stream Channels
Academy of Art U YouTube Channel
Academy of Art University Facebook Page
Academy U Fashion School of Fashion Facebook Page
Photograph and Video Links to Download
Academy of Art University 2017 Graduation Fashion Show – High Resolution Images
AcademyUFashion High Resolution Photos by Randy Brooke, GettyImages
Includes Designer Portraits by Robert Curry, Lineups and Swatches
Academy of Art University 2017 Graduation Fashion Show – Low Resolution Images
AcademyUFashion Low Resolution Photos by Randy Brooke, GettyImages
Includes Designer Portraits by Robert Curry, Lineups and Swatches
Academy of Art University 2017 Graduation Fashion Show Videos
Use link below to download all three versions of the show video:
AcademyUFashion Spring 2017 NYFW Show & 2017 Graduation Fashion Show Looping MP4
Only Runway from NYFW and SF Grad Shows. Original Music. Additional Camera (-6db)
AcademyUFashion 2017 Graduation Fashion Show – 7:00 PM Full Show
Includes Awards, Speeches, and Original Music (-12db)
Runway only with replacement music for YouTube Channel:
2017 Graduation Fashion Show. Runway Only. Music Replaced. Additional Camera.
In-house Press Contact:
Ian MacKintosh, Director of Public Relations & Special Events
Academy of Art University School of Fashion
O: (415) 618-3849 M: (845) 417-5219 E: email@example.com
School of Fashion at Academy of Art University
79 New Montgomery Street, San Francisco, CA 94105
Call 800.544.2787 (U.S. only) or 415.274.2200
Academy of Art University: http://www.academyart.edu/
School of Fashion: http://www.academyart.edu/academics/fashion