By Lauren Herber, Co-Editor
On Friday, February 1, Thunderbird’s Business of Fashion Club had its first event: a trip downtown to see the Native American Fashion Show at the Heard Museum. The event coincided perfectly with First Friday, a cultural event on Roosevelt Street in downtown Phoenix in which local art vendors set up along the street to show their wares. In addition to seeing local art, you can taste the many creative offerings of food trucks and enjoy live music while meandering the quirky, street art-covered streets of downtown Phoenix. Another thing to take advantage of is events hosted by nearby museums like the Heard Museum and the Phoenix Art Museum. Both museums offer free admission on First Friday and typically host special events.
One such event was the fashion show. The show featured a live DJ, talented designers and models, and traditional dancers. OXDX Clothing and the House of Darylene were the featured clothing designers. The models walked down the runway, accompanied by DJ Element’s mixing, in designs that were a gorgeous mix of modern and traditional: think skirt and top combos and elegant dresses adorned with intricate beading and weaving. “I really liked that the designs reflected the heritage of the artists,” said Allison Skabrat (MAGAM ’17, US), president of the Business of Fashion Club. It was indeed fascinating to see elements of the traditional garb featured in the rest of the museum reinvented in new, modern ways.
After the runway show, dancer Kevin Dakota Duncan performed a traditional hoop dance that was truly unlike anything I’ve ever seen. Dressed completely in traditional garb, Duncan performed a cultural dance that included the use of 10+ hoops, which he twirled and weaved around his body, creating seemingly impossible constellations of hoops. The performance was a unique experience, an exhibition on another culture’s traditions and rituals that were fascinating to witness.
The performance was high quality and enjoyable to watch. “I was really impressed with the quality and professionalism of the show,” said Allison. “The museum was the perfect spot for it, despite the fact that it was crowded.” This is the second event I’ve attended at the Heard Museum (the first being their Frida Kahlo exhibit), and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed both. Don’t miss the Heard Museum’s upcoming events, such as the World Championship Hoop Dance Contest (February 13-14) and the 58th annual Heard Museum Guild Indian Fair and Market (March 5-6).