Highlights Tours

Free docent-led tours of the galleries are offered weekends at 1:30 p.m. (textile tour) and 2:45 p.m. (Washingtoniana tour).

Exhibition Programs

Photo of artist Alice Beasley discussing her work with a visitor

Museum curators, researchers, and special guests explore themes from current exhibitions. 

Inspiring Beauty: 50 Years of Ebony Fashion Fair

Lecture: A Sartorial and Sociological Study of Stephen Burrows

Thursday, April 13, 2017 - 12:00pm

Fashion and textile professional Tanya Myers discusses the style and impact of Stephen Burrows, a renowned creator and one of the first African Americans to acheive statures as a designer.

Film: "Ebony Presents the John H. Johnson Interview"

Thursday, April 20, 2017 - 12:00pm

In this film, John Johnson, founder of the Johnson Publishing Company, describes how he successfully built the Ebony and Jet magazine brands.

Gallery Talk: 20th-Century Italian Designers and the Ebony Fashion Fair

Thursday, April 27, 2017 - 12:00pm

This talk by Tanya Williams Wetenhall, GW assistant professor of design, will explore the inimitable Italian style on display in "Inspiring Beauty: 50 Years of Ebony Fashion Fair."

Community Discussion: Memories of Ebony Fashion Fair in D.C.

Saturday, April 29, 2017 - 2:00pm

Audrey Smaltz, commentator for Ebony Fashion Fair from 1970-1977, will share the stories, styles, and impact of the shows on D.C.’s fashion identity.

Family Day: Children’s Ball (10 AM)

Saturday, May 13, 2017 - 10:00am to 12:00pm

Celebrate Mother’s Day weekend at the museum with fancy treats, dancing beats, and a kid-centered visit to the exhibition "Inspiring Beauty: 50 Years of Ebony Fashion Fair."

Family Day: Children’s Ball (1 PM)

Saturday, May 13, 2017 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm

Celebrate Mother’s Day weekend at the museum with fancy treats, dancing beats, and a kid-centered visit to the exhibition "Inspiring Beauty: 50 Years of Ebony Fashion Fair."

Conversation: Ebony Fashion Fair and the European Connection

Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 6:00pm

Hear fashion consultant Shayla Simpson, a former Ebony Fashion Fair model, commentator, and buyer, as she discusses what it was like to work and travel with Eunice Johnson to the couture design houses in Europe.

Lecture: African-American Dress and the Will to Adorn

Wednesday, May 24, 2017 - 6:00pm

The Ebony Fashion Fair had significant impact on African-American communities. Join Diana Baird N’Diaye, curator and cultural heritage specialist at the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage for a discussion of African-American community style.

Film: "Versailles ’73: American Runway Revolution"

Thursday, May 25, 2017 - 12:00pm

In 1973, American fashion designers Anne Klein, Bill Blass, and others pit their ready-to-wear clothing lines against the lions of French haute couture in a historic runway rumble.

Gallery Talk: Hanae Mori Evening Dress and Kimono Coat

Thursday, June 8, 2017 - 12:00pm

Join curator Lee Talbot as he discusses Hanae Mori, one of Japan's earliest couture designers.

Lecture: Behind the Scenes of "Inspiring Beauty"

Thursday, June 15, 2017 - 6:00pm

Join exhibition curator Joy Bivins for an exciting inside look at what it took to choose the themes, stories, and fabulous fashions of "Inspiring Beauty: 50 Years of Ebony Fashion Fair."

Curator Tour: "Inspiring Beauty: 50 Years of Ebony Fashion Fair"

Saturday, June 17, 2017 - 11:00am

Joy L. Bivins, director of curatorial affairs at the Chicago History Museum, and Camille Ann Brewer, curator of contemporary art at the George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum, will guide you through the new exhibition.

Workshop: Fashion from Paper

Thursday, June 29, 2017 - 12:00pm

Spend an afternoon creating your own designer dress from recycled newspaper and other common household items using your imagination and fashions from "Inspiring Beauty: 50 Years of Ebony Fashion Fair."