IN CONVERSATION & PANELS

11.9.20 THE PATH FORWARD: DR. ANDRE JOHNSON & DR. LISA CORRIGAN

On Monday, November 6th, 2020, at 6:30 PM, Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted a live video conversation with Dr. Andre Johnson and Dr. Lisa Corrigan. They discussed our nation’s current state and how we should move forward in our post-election world.

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Dr. Lisa M. Corrigan is a Professor of Communication, Director of the Gender Studies Program, and Affiliate Faculty in both African & African American Studies and Latin American and Latino Studies in the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Arkansas. She is a feminist rhetorical scholar who researches and teaches in the areas of social movement studies, the Black Power and civil rights movement, prison studies, feminist studies, the Cold War, and the history of public address. Her first book, Prison Power: How Prison Influenced the Movement for Black Liberation (2016: University Press of Mississippi) won the 2017 Diamond Anniversary Book Award and the 2017 African American Communication and Culture Division Outstanding Book Award, both from the National Communication Association. Her newest book, Black Feelings: Race and Affect in the Long Sixties (2020: University Press of Mississippi) examines how the role of race is shaping public policy and how public policy shapes racial identification. She co-hosts the popular podcast, Lean Back: Critical Feminist Conversations, with Laura Weiderhaft. And she has worked in political campaigns and as a political consultant for over 25 years.

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Andre E. Johnson, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Rhetoric and Media Studies in the Department of Communication and Film at the University of Memphis. He teaches classes in African American Public Address, Rhetoric Race and Religion, Media Studies, Interracial Communication, Rhetoric, and Popular Culture, and Hip Hop Studies. He is currently collecting and editing the works of AME Church Bishop Henry McNeal Turner under the title The Literary Archive of Henry McNeal Turner (Edwin Mellen Press). He has already published the first six volumes, and the seventh one is set for publication in 2020. Additionally, along with his academic titles, he currently serves as Senior Pastor of Gifts of Life Ministries, an inner-city church built upon the servant leadership philosophy in Memphis, Tennessee. In addition to collecting the writings of Bishop Turner, Dr. Johnson is the co-author (with Amanda Nell Edgar) of The Struggle Over Black Lives Matter and All Lives Matter (2018) that won the 2018 National Communication Association (NCA) African American Communication and Culture Division Outstanding Book Award. He is also the author of The Forgotten Prophet: Bishop Henry McNeal Turner and the African American Prophetic Tradition (2012) that won the same national award in 2013. He is the editor of Urban God Talk: Constructing a Hip Hop Spirituality (2013) and his latest book is No Future in this Country: The Prophetic Pessimism of Bishop Henry McNeal Turner which the University Press of Mississippi plans to release in 2020. He is also the curator and director of the Henry McNeal Turner Project (#HMTProject); a digital archive dedicated to the writings and study of Bishop Turner. With political tensions reaching an all-time high in the previous week, many of us have asked the question, “where do we go from here?” While our nation stands more noticeably divided than we had previously assumed, we must start a conversation on “The Path Forward.”

10.14.20 A WHOLE MOOD: UNPACKING “BLACK IS KING”

On October 14th, Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted Fashion Designer Korto Momolu and University of Arkansas Professor Constance Bailey as they had an in-depth virtual conversation regarding symbolism in Beyonce’s Black Is King. The panelists unpacked the film’s fashion, themes, timely relevance, and the use of spiritual and cultural references that are used throughout the African diaspora.

Dr. Constance Bailey used her expertise in Black Feminism and Womanist studies, as well as her course curriculum to bring important dialogue to the discussion regarding black love, black women’s coming of age experiences (black girl magic), family relationships and work. Korto Momolu who is a Liberian-born fashion designer and stylist spoke to African iconography that is used throughout the film as well as the impact that fashion plays regarding storytelling throughout Black communities.

Continue reading below to learn more about our amazing panelists:

Korto Momolu

Inspired by her African roots, Liberian-born fashion designer and stylist Korto Momolu (pronounced Cut • Toe – Mo • Mo • Lu) is stamping her global brand with fashion-forward women’s wear, ultimately creating art that celebrates the essence of her rich heritage through the use of traditional and luxury fabrics. ​

A graduate of the L’Academies des Couturiers Design Institute in Ottawa, Ontario [Korto relocated to Canada in 1990 following the coup in Liberia a year prior]. Korto launched her custom line while working as an independent fashion designer in 2006. Advancing her field experience, she auditioned for and earned a spot on the 5th season of Bravo TV’s hit show, Project Runway. Throughout the season, Korto’s primary signature fuse of color and diversity in style and presentation, in addition to her feisty spirit, resonated well with audiences. In the end, it earned her the prize of “fan favorite” and ultimately, a placement of 1st runner-up at the season’s close.

The Korto Momolu brand has over the years expanded to include creating an accessory line for Dillard’s Incorporated department stores; producing an eco-friendly jewelry line for the Smithsonian museum stores; designing the uniforms for the Walton Family Museum (Crystal Bridges); serving as the Cheerios’ ambassador for the Shoprite Partners in Caring “Knock Out Hunger” campaign; and contributing her time and talents to countless charitable and philanthropic endeavors.

Highlighted in the ‘Top 5 Designers to Watch’ at her debut season at New York fashion week SS2009 season, Korto has been featured in many international and national publications and has appeared on numerous television shows, including two seasons of Project Runway AllStars.

In the fall of 2019 Korto Collaborated with Women Grow, an organization focused on female leadership in the Cannabis industry. The Korto Momolu for Women Grow line was Created and presented at NYFW for SS20 shows. The line included sustainable fabrications, including hemp and cork.

She presently makes her home with her husband and children in Little Rock, Arkansas.

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Dr. Constance Bailey

Constance Bailey is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Arkansas. She also holds a joint appointment in African and African American Studies. Her research interests include African American folklore, American comedy and humor, and black speculative fiction. Her article, “Signifying Sistas: Black Women’s Humor and Intersectional Poetics” is currently under consideration. When she is not attending to her three wonderful children, she is hard at work on her first manuscript, The Predicament of Crossing: The Black Collegian in Popular Culture.

10.10.20 ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES IN THE APPAREL INDUSTRY BY DR. LANCE CHERAMIE

On October 10, 2020 Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted a virtual presentation by Dr. Lance Cheramie to share his expertise on the social, economic, and environmental impacts of the apparel industry around the world. He offered insights on how the apparel industry impact everything from the world’s rivers to poverty and how our actions play a role in these effects. After his presentation, Dr. Cheramie answered audience questions and offered solutions that inspire hope for a sustainable future!

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Dr. Lance Cheramie is an apparel merchandising and product development instructor in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Science’s School of Human Environmental Sciences at the University of Arkansas. Cheramie earned his Ph.D. in public policy with a specialization in sustainability and addresses environmental issues in the apparel supply chain with students.

Cheramie also serves as a Climate Reality Leader as part of the Climate Reality Project responsible for educating, promoting, and creating sustainable solutions to help combat the climate crisis in order to preserve the earth and the future of the next generation. He was recently involved in a training conducted by former US Vice President and Nobel Laureate Al Gore to raise awareness about climate change science and solutions.

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On Oct 10th and 11th, The Climate Reality Project and TED Talks partnered for two days of presentations and discussions exploring the future we want and how we get there. It kicked off at 10am CST on October 10 with TED’s Countdown, a five-hour program of live-streamed TED talks and discussions with world-changing innovators and thought leaders confronting the climate crisis head-on and showing the way to a just, zero-carbon future. Starting at 3pm CST, 24 Hours of Reality: Countdown to the Future continued the conversation with 24 full hours of digital presentations and discussions of how the climate crisis, environmental issues, COVID-19, and racial injustice shape our planet and this incredible moment. All led by former Vice President Al Gore and Climate Reality Leaders like Dr. Cheramie all around the world.

https://www.climaterealityproject.org/

9.23.20 IN CONVERSATION: BRITTANY ALLEN

On September 23rd at 5:30 PM CST, Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted a virtual discussion with fashion designer and previous Project Runway contestant, Brittany Allen. The AAFF team discussed Brittany’s career, inspirations, and her experience on and after the hit TV show Project Runway. AAFF also took a trip back down memory lane and talk to Brittany about her experience participating in Northwest Arkansas Fashion Week.

Brittany Allen grew up in Fort Smith, Arkansas, and strives for perfection and excellence in her unique designs. After receiving her Bachelor of Science from the University of Arkansas and her MFA from SCAD, she moved to Austin, Texas, where she is currently an adjunct professor of fashion courses at a local university. She works on her brand full time, and is simultaneously in the final stages of her PhD in Apparel, Merchandising, and Design at Iowa State. Brittany’s designs mix powerful shapes with feminine prints, and she incorporates French seams throughout every garment to add couture refinement, and emphasize her formal training and techniques. Brittany’s goal as a designer is to bring fun and excitement back into the fashion industry, and her designs are meant to make women feel more empowered and beautiful. She describes her brand as if Dolly Parton and Betsey Johnson had a baby who was then raised by Anna Wintour. Her designs have been showcased at Austin Fashion Week 2017-2019, 2017 Houston Fashion Week, and September 2019 Style Fashion Week, along with WWD and Footwear News.

9.22.20 IN CONVERSATION: DENISE INCANDELA

On September 22nd, the Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum team hosted a virtual discussion with visionary retail executive Denise Incandela. Denise provided her insight on how the fashion industry has changed over the past 20 years and where she sees it heading in the future.

Denise shared how she began her career in fashion and offered suggestions to creatives on how to sustain creative endeavors during this time.

Denise Incandela is the Senior Vice President of Merchandising for Walmart’s Women’s Group and Online Brands. She is responsible for transforming fashion across Walmart’s Women’s businesses- womenswear, intimates, and jewelry, and accessories for stores and online. She oversees Moosejaw, Bonobos, Eloquii, and Free Assembly brand – all Walmart direct to consumer brands.

Incandela has an extensive and noteworthy resume including her former role as CEO of Aerosoles, President of Global Digital for the Ralph Lauren Corporation, and EVP and CMO of Saks Fifth Avenue.

This is a discussion full of expert information on the industry that you don’t want to miss! Incandela has been featured in: “50 List”, Glamour “Women of the Year”, Brand Innovator’s “Top 50 Women in Brand Marketing”, Direct Marketing News’ “Marketing Hall of Femme”, Luxury Daily’s “Luxury Women to Watch”, and Retail Online Integration’s “Top Women in Cross-Channel Retail”. Denise has also been featured in a number of leadership books including “How Remarkable Women Lead” and “The Next Generation of Women Leaders”.

8.27.20 IN CONVERSATION: KEEPING UP WITH COVID: MITIGATION STRATEGIES WITH DR. OSBORNE

On Thursday, August 27th, 2020 at 5:30 PM Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted a live video discussion with Dr. Cara Osborne regarding risk mitigation for COVID-19 and what individuals and families can do to keep safe as numbers continue to rise.

Dr. Osborne provided situational analysis regarding the severity of certain settings and then provided details and facts that can minimize your chance of exposure in each setting. She touched on topics such as mask fatigue, goggle and face shield usage, navigating family gatherings during this crisis, and building consent before gathering together.

In this discussion, Dr. Osborne had the opportunity to discuss certain myths pertaining to the virus as well as provided factual information that can help you determine if dining at that specific restaurant you’ve been missing is worth it, or should you stay in and opt for takeout instead.

Dr. Cara Osborne is a Certified Nurse Midwife by clinical training and holds a BA in Biology from Transylvania University, MSN in Midwifery from Vanderbilt School of Nursing, and a MS and SD in Maternal and Child Health from Harvard School of Public Health. Her academic area of interest is perinatal epidemiology. Cara was an Assistant Professor in the Eleanor Mann School of Nursing at the University of Arkansas prior to joining the founding team of a network of private equity-backed freestanding birth centers in Arkansas, North Carolina, Tennesee, and Colorado. In 2018, Dr. Osborne returned to the nursing school and in the fall of 2020 joined the Strategy, Entrepreneurship and Venture Innovation (SEVI) department in the Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas where she will be teaching New Venture Development and providing healthcare industry expertise to various initiatives within the college and the broader Northwest Arkansas Community. She was recently added to the 2020 Class of Women in Business by the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal and is a current rotorcraft student and member of the Summit Aviation board of directors at Thaden Field in Bentonville.

8.24.20 IN CONVERSATION: CAITLIN DRAPER MATTELIN, STRESS & UNCERTAINTY

On Monday, August 24th at 6:30 pm, Caitlin Draper Mattelin and the Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum on discussed tools to cope with uncertainty and stress during COVID-19, including radical acceptance.

As COVID-19 has continued for months on end, the prolonged stress can leave us feeling constantly overwhelmed and unsure of what to do next. It is common to feel depressed and anxious while trying to support ourselves, our families, and friends while social distancing and when dealing with issues outside of our control for such prolonged lengths of time. Carve out some time for yourself this month and attend this meeting to obtain those much-needed tools to make your life a little less stressful during this time.

Caitlin R. Draper Mattelin, MSW, LCSW, ACAS is a psychotherapist who owns a private practice in Fayetteville, Arkansas. She graduated with both her undergraduate and graduate degrees in social work from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. Caitlin specializes in Autism Spectrum Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, anxiety disorders, and perinatal mental health. She holds the clinical credential of Advanced Autism Specialist (ACAS) through the International Bureau of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES). Caitlin has been practicing meditation for over 15 years. When she’s not working Caitlin loves to cook, read, and is learning to garden. She probably watches too much reality television. She lives with her husband in Fayetteville.

This presentation is not a substitute for therapy. Call 911 immediately if you believe you are experiencing a mental health emergency. If you are experiencing stress, anxiety, symptoms of depression, trauma, difficulty coping, or other mental health issues, we recommend that you schedule an appointment with a local mental health care provider.

  • Caitlin R. Draper Mattelin, MSW, LCSW, ACAS 1101 N. College Avenue Suite 200, Fayetteville, Arkansas 72701 (479) 777-2521 hello@caitlindraper.com
  • University of Arkansas Counseling & Psychological Services 479-575-5276
  • Ozark Guidance Center (Community Mental Health Care Provider for Washington and Benton Counties) (479) 750-2020
  • Western Arkansas Counseling & Guidance Center (Community Mental Health Care Provider for Fort Smith & River Valley) 1-800-542-1031
  • National Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-8255

On Thursday, August 13th, 2020 Kathleen Gonzalez (Northwest Arkansas Fashion Week‘s Director of Modeling and a new Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum Board member), moderated a conversation with fashion and modeling industry experts:

Kathleen Gonzalez is a native Californian who was raised in Mexico and returned to the United State to attend school at the University of Arkansas in 2007. She graduated from the University of Arkansas with her BA in Architecture Studies in 2011. In 2018 she received her Master’s In Business Administration from John Brown University in Siloam Springs. She has been a part of the NWAFW family since 2013 where she began as a model. Kathleen is currently participating in her current role as Director of Modeling for NWAFW where she trains and coaches models on the runway and editorials. She lives in Bentonville with her son, Christopher, and works for The Coca-Cola Company and Data Analyst. She is also currently serving on The University of Arkansas Alumni Board of Directors.

Elizabeth Peyton-Jones is passionate about changing people’s perceptions of healthy eating. After two decades of working one-to-one with clients, she’s seen first-hand how changing the food people eat can revitalize health, energy levels, and wellbeing. Starting small from her London clinic, Elizabeth went global with her company EPJHealth and now works to find life-changing solutions for people’s health-related problems through lecturing, writing, consulting, and broadcasting on food, health, cooking, and lifestyle. Her two books, Cook Yourself Young and Eat Yourself Young, were translated into 7 languages and are still relevant today. During her time as a consultant and food/health author, Elizabeth was approached by the British Fashion Council to create a diet for models. Being mindful that the question of size zero, skinny models, and death on the catwalk had all been raised in the media a few years before, Elizabeth endeavored to explore the reasons why, before attempting to create the perfect ‘model’ diet. Elizabeth’s findings were startling and led to her current role as CEO and Founder of the Responsible Trust for Models (RTM). This entity is responsible for ensuring best practices in the industry, introducing a code of conduct and behavior with model agencies, and ensuring more responsibility is taken by the Brands who employ the models. RTM is also curating a curriculum with a number of fashion schools globally which will empower aspiring young models, encourage their self-esteem, and educate and prepare them for the career that lies ahead.

Dr. Sundran Rajendra is the Director of Research for the Responsible Trust for Models. For the last six months, he has been heading RTM’s Brighter Future industry consultation on how to make modeling safer and more sustainable. Before joining RTM at the start of this year, Sundran spent twenty years working in human resources, business development, and consulting for the global management consultancy, McKinsey and Company in Australia, Asia, and Europe. Over that time, he trained and coached hundreds of colleagues and clients at all stages of their careers as well as analyzed dozens of different companies and industries. Sundran started work as a research scientist in Australia, after completing a BSc in Physiology and a Doctorate in Neuroscience from the University of New South Wales. His not-for-profit contributions include modernizing Age UK as head of its organization’s development and helping reform the UK’s domestic abuse sector through national standards and training as a trustee for Safelives. Sundran, his wife, Jill, and their Golden Retriever, Charlie, live in Hastings on the southeast English coast.

Renée Mittelstaedt is a Canadian model based in New York City. Over the course of her decade-long modeling career, she’s worked with major brands like Nike, Aerie, GStar, Target, and many more. Between catching flights and shooting campaigns, Renée also studied at McGill University and graduated with a BA in sociology and communications in 2016. After graduating, she moved to New York City to model full-time and continued to find ways to pursue her passions beyond modeling. She quickly learned that finding flexible work opportunities was difficult and there were next to no resources to guide models along their career journey and prepare them for their pivot. In 2019, she launched The Pivot with the hope of encouraging models to step out of their comfort zone, start getting real about their future, and pursue their interests beyond modeling. Born out of necessity, The Pivot is her way of ensuring career security for all models and multi-hyphenates.

8.5.20 IN CONVERSATION: JUDITH YANEZ

This will be a discussion on creating culturally responsive programming through non-profit management strategies and adaptation to current crises in education.

A question to ask yourself, “How do we get more parents involved in their child’s education?” On Wednesday, August 5th at 5:30 PM find out by joining Judith A. Yáñez and our CEO, Robin Atkinson, as they begin the discussion on being culturally responsive to the needs of families in Northwest Arkansas.

Judith A. Yáñez, MAT is an advocate for culturally responsive spaces that strengthen parent voices in Northwest Arkansas and nationally. She graduated from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville with a degree in mathematics and a Master of Arts in Teaching. She is currently the Founding Executive Director at RootED Northwest Arkansas, National Parent Union Council Member and the first Latina elected official in Northwest Arkansas, serving as a Justice of the Peace for Washington County District #4.

Prior to founding RootED Northwest Arkansas, she served as the Education Program Manager at the Cisneros Center for New Americans and a mathematics teacher at Springdale High School and Haas Hall Academy. These experiences allowed her to meet hard-working immigrant families, like her own parents, that did not have an education beyond elementary school, resources, or support to make intentional and strategic decisions for their child’s education.

To learn more about RootED read their bio below!

“RootED Northwest Arkansas is a non-profit organization that focuses on serving all parents of children in grades K-12. Northwest Arkansas is rich with educational opportunities but what we have discovered is, many parents are not aware of the educational options available to their family. We work closely with under-resourced families of all socio-economic and cultural backgrounds to help them better understand the myriad of educational options available to their children, be it public district schools, charter schools, independent schools, private school or homeschool. We also work closely with parents and the schools to help parents become a more confident advocate for their child’s education.”

Welcome

**This conversation was previously recorded and will premiere via Facebook, YouTube, and this page on Wednesday, August 5th at 5:30 PM. The video links will be visible via our Facebook page as well as this Facebook event page.

7.29.20 IN CONVERSATION: KERIN ROSE GOLD

On Wednesday, July 29th, Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum and designer of iconic custom eyewear and accessories, Kerin Rose Gold met to discuss her career! Kerin has designed custom pieces for artists such as Rihanna, Lady Gaga, and the Queen herself, Beyonce ♥. We recommend that you check out the trailer for Beyonce’s newest project “Black Is King” to see Kerin’s designs in motion!

In this conversation, we learned what Kerin has been up to lately, what it’s like trying to survive as an artist in NY during this pandemic, and what it’s like making pieces for celebrities like Beyonce! If you’d like to learn a little bit about Kerin and her eyewear line before the interview, check out her bio below!

Kerin Rose Gold has been pushing boundaries since 2009 with her luxury artisanal eyewear line A-Morir. As seen on the world’s biggest pop stars and sold in high-end boutiques across the globe, A-Morir sets itself apart with rebellious designs and impeccable, hand-crafted execution. Yet this trendsetting brand is just one outlet for Kerin’s irreverent and unique spirit. An upstart creator since childhood, this native New Yorker graduated with honors from NYU with a degree in Pop Culture History, linking her loves of art, music, and costuming while delving deep into the French existentialist concept of the “spectacle.” Kerin continues to connect far-flung creative dots in her adult career, whether designing the first women’s sneaker for SUPRA, starring in ad campaigns for Sebastian Professional (as their Visionary Brand Ambassador, leading to a glasses collaboration distributed in hundreds of salons around the world), writing a bi-monthly column for Nylon, or representing the US as Vogue Italia’s New Talent and Emerging Designer. Becoming an eyewear icon was never part of the plan for this multi-faceted artist, but it fits: no one sees the world quite like her.

ABOUT a-morir:

a-morir, the luxury eyewear and accessory line from designer Kerin Rose Gold, pioneered the trend of embellished eyewear by combining bespoke production and premium materials with aesthetic maturity and sophisticated design. What began as custom work with Rihanna, Katy Perry, and Lady Gaga in 2008 has evolved into a true luxury brand, whose pieces are praised by Vogue Italia as the “favorite [eyewear] brand of American stars”. Year after year, a-morir has cemented its place as the go-to brand for daring, couture-worthy sunglasses and statement pieces. a-morir is ever experimenting and ever-expanding. New takes on old favorites came effortlessly with the launch of objects and home goods pieces. The development of a customization studio and crafting classes followed, working with corporate and private clients alike. a-morir is a mainstay in high end and cutting edge editorials around the world, with a Who’s Who of devoted repeat clientele. Everyone from modern superstars (Beyonce, Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Snoop Dogg, Nicki Minaj) to pop legends (Grace Jones, Debbie Harry of Blondie) have purchased multiple pairs of a-morir over the years. The brand’s coveted pieces are made-to-order in limited quantities, ensuring the highest level of exclusivity.

7.27.20 IN CONVERSATION: LISA CORRIGAN, WHITE FEMININITY: ANXIETY, PERFECTIONISM, AND JUSTICE

On Monday, July 27th, 2020 at 5:30 pm Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted a live video question and answer session with Dr. Lisa Corrigan following up on our previous discussions on allyship during the Black Lives Matter movement. In this conversation, we covered topics such as the history of white femininity, how white femininity is shaped by and shapes patriarchy, and how white femininity can consciously and unconsciously harm others.

The videos from our first two sessions on Ally Etiquette 101 is available here: https://youtu.be/Z1-B7ctm4vc and https://youtu.be/nuAp493QeJA

This conversation was held in what we at Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum have begun to call a Brave Space during our previous Conversations for Change co-hosted with Elxr Yoga Lounge. A Brave Space is a space that encourages dialogue where you may feel uncomfortable because you will be held accountable for past experiences and new understandings- we believe this discomfort is what leads to individual growth that will change the community for the better.

Dr. Lisa M. Corrigan is a Professor of Communication, Director of the Gender Studies Program, and Affiliate Faculty in both African & African American Studies and Latin American Studies in the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Arkansas. She is a feminist rhetorical scholar who researches and teaches in the areas of social movement studies, the Black Power and civil rights movement, prison studies, feminist studies, the Cold War, and the history of public address.

Dr. Corrigan’s latest book, “Black Feelings: Race and Affect in the Long Sixties (Race, Rhetoric, and Media Series)” is available at local bookstores and online https://www.kizzysbooksandmore.com/book/9781496827951 https://44thand3rdbooksellers.indielite.org/book/9781496827951 https://www.amazon.com/Black-Feelings-Affect-Sixties-Rhetoric/dp/1496827953

7.13.20 IN CONVERSATION: CAITLIN DRAPER MATTELIN, RADICAL COMPASSION AND MINDFULNESS

2020 has been a difficult year on many fronts and social distancing can lead to individuals feeling isolated, anxious, and alone. However, we believe open and honest conversations on mental health can help alleviate some of these stressors. Caitlin discussed in this live video workshop radical compassion, RAIN (Recognition, Allow, Investigate, Nurture), and led a guided meditation.

Caitlin R. Draper Mattelin, MSW, LCSW, ACAS is a psychotherapist who owns a private practice in Fayetteville, Arkansas. She graduated with both her undergraduate and graduate degrees in social work from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. Caitlin specializes in Autism Spectrum Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, anxiety disorders, and perinatal mental health. She holds the clinical credential of Advanced Autism Specialist (ACAS) through the International Bureau of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES). Caitlin has been practicing meditation for over 15 years. When she’s not working Caitlin loves to cook, read, and is learning to garden. She probably watches too much reality television. She lives with her husband in Fayetteville.

This presentation is not a substitute for therapy. Call 911 immediately if you believe you are experiencing a mental health emergency. If you are experiencing stress, anxiety, symptoms of depression, trauma, difficulty coping, or other mental health issues, we recommend that you schedule an appointment with a local mental health care provider.

Caitlin R. Draper Mattelin, MSW, LCSW, ACAS 1101 N. College Avenue Suite 200, Fayetteville, Arkansas 72701 (479) 777-2521 hello@caitlindraper.com

University of Arkansas Counseling & Psychological Services 479-575-5276

Ozark Guidance Center (Community Mental Health Care Provider for Washington and Benton Counties) (479) 750-2020

Western Arkansas Counseling & Guidance Center (Community Mental Health Care Provider for Fort Smith & River Valley) 1-800-542-1031

National Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-8255

6.30.20 IN CONVERSATION: LISA CORRIGAN, DE-CENTERING WHITENESS: PROCESSING WHITE FEELINGS, BUILDING POLITICAL ACTION

On Tuesday, June 30, 2020 at 5:30 pm Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted a live video question and answer session with Dr. Lisa Corrigan following up on our previous discussion on allyship during the Black Lives Matter movement.

This conversation was held in what we at Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum have begun to call a Brave Space during our previous Conversations for Change co-hosted with Elxr Yoga Lounge. A Brave Space is a space that encourages dialogue where you may feel uncomfortable because you will be held accountable for past experiences and new understandings- we believe this discomfort is what leads to individual growth that will change the community for the better.

Dr. Lisa M. Corrigan is a Professor of Communication, Director of the Gender Studies Program, and Affiliate Faculty in both African & African American Studies and Latin American Studies in the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Arkansas. She is a feminist rhetorical scholar who researches and teaches in the areas of social movement studies, the Black Power and civil rights movement, prison studies, feminist studies, the Cold War, and the history of public address.

6.25.20 IN CONVERSATION: ANDREA BAZEMORE, THE IMPORTANCE OF SOCIAL JUSTICE CURRICULUM IN SCHOOLS

Join us on Thursday, June 25th at 3:00pm for a video presentation on The Importance of Social Justice Curriculum in Schools.

Andrea Bazemore is the Founder of The Black Apple, the first black-owned curriculum company on its way to a full K-5 curriculum that is rigorous, culturally relevant, anti-bias, anti-racist, accepting of all abilities and disabilities, and equitable. She is also the Founder of Diverse Kids Read, a non-profit with a mission to provide children with affordable books written and/or illustrated by people of color. Bazemore is an educator who is currently earning her Masters of Education from The John Hopkins University in Early Childhood Education and Teaching and has experience teaching through Teach for America in Tulsa, Oklahoma and in charter and public schools in the Dallas- Fort Worth area.

The Arkansas Arts and Fashion Forum was founded in 2017 with the hope of providing a central location for creative producers in Arkansas to find professional development resources, creative inspiration, and a community of support. The mission of the Arkansas Arts and Fashion Forum is to provide educational opportunities and professional support for aspiring avant-garde fashion designers, artists, and other creative professionals who are committed to building a vibrant and inspired creative fashion community in Arkansas.

The video will be available online beginning on Thursday, June 25th at 3:00 pm at http://www.arkansasfashion.org/talks-and-panels/ or https://youtu.be/4YgDDVXp_58

6.22.20 IN CONVERSATION: RAVEN COOK, FASHION AS A TOOL FOR LIBERATION

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted a discussion and learning opportunity led and curated by Raven Cook on Monday, June 22, 2020. We dove into art history and through that lens learn about impactful leaders who stood up to racism and fought for freedom, and equality.

Black History Education Programming creator Raven Cook was a junior at the University of Arkansas when approached by the Rising Leaders Fellowship to create a program that addresses educational inequity. Having a passion for Black History, Cook decided to create the program Inspire 365 to empower others to not only study Black History, but to use history to empower themselves and be a vehicle for change. Raven Cook actively seeks to incorporate Black History in every American classroom, library, and beyond. Foundations: Black History Education Programming is constantly welcoming opportunities to teach and share the accounts of Black Americans it is our sincere hope that you will use this website to build and grow daily!

Raven’s website: https://rncook02.wixsite.com/foundationsrc/about

To Support Raven’s Work: Please feel free to make a donation to KUAF in dedication to Reflections In Black https://www.kuaf.com/become-kuaf-member

6.16.20 IN CONVERSATION: LISA CORRIGAN, AN INTRODUCTION TO ALLYSHIP DURING THE BLACK LIVES MATTER MOVEMENT

On Tuesday, June 16, 2020 at 5:30 pm Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted a live video question and answer session with Dr. Lisa Corrigan on how to be an ally during the Black Lives Matter Movement. Topics included:

-How should you call out racist actions and statements made by close peers or family?
-How can you support BIPOC during protests without centering the movement around yourself?
-Now that you have spoken out on social media your support for Black Lives Matter, what should you do next?
-What can you do to be an ally if you had a racist upbringing and past problematic actions?
-How can you sustain the movement in the coming weeks/ months/ years to make substantive changes to better the lives of BIPOC?
-How can individuals with white privilege better advocate for people of color to their politicians to rebuild the system to create equality?

This conversation was held in what we at Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum has begun to call a Brave Space during our previous Conversations for Change co-hosted with Elxr Yoga Lounge. A Brave Space is a space that encourages dialogue where you may feel uncomfortable because you will be held accountable for past experiences and new understandings- we believe this discomfort is what leads to individual growth that will change the community for the better.

Dr. Lisa M. Corrigan is a Professor of Communication, Director of the Gender Studies Program, and Affiliate Faculty in both African & African American Studies and Latin American Studies in the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Arkansas. She is a feminist rhetorical scholar who researches and teaches in the areas of social movement studies, the Black Power and civil rights movement, prison studies, feminist studies, the Cold War, and the history of public address.

For more information on white privilege, white fragility, and being an ally, please consider reading:
“How to be Antiracist” by Ibram X. Kendi
“White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo
“Me and White Supremacy: Combat Racism, Change the World, and Become a Good Ancestor” by Layla F Saad
“White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son” by Tim Wise

3.1.20 CONVERSATIONS FOR CHANGE: UNPACKING WHITE PRIVILEGE AND PREJUDICE

EVENT DETAILS | MARCH 1, 2020
5:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Location | Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum Office
203 E Emma Ave, Ste A
Fayetteville, AR 72701

ĒLXR Yoga Lounge and Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum partnered again to present our second edition of ‘Conversations for Change’ – A Film Screening and Group Discussion to take on the topics of inclusiveness, anti-racist practice, and white privilege.

We aim to create a thoughtful workspace for women of color and white women to join together to discuss how we can work as a community to fight oppressive social norms and better understand each other. Most especially, we want to create an entry point for white women who want to participate as anti-racist allies but may not have the right tool-kit or know how to enter the conversation.

We are here to talk through it! We screened Red Table Talk’s Episode, “Unpacking White Privilege and Prejudice” and used it as a jumping off point for a group discussion. Feel free to watch the episode of Red Table Talk here: https://z-m-www.facebook.com/watch/?v=322049678665001

12.15.19 CONVERSATIONS FOR CHANGE

EVENT DETAILS | DECEMBER 15TH, 2019
5:00- 8:00 pm

Location | AAFF OFFICE
203 E Emma Ave, Ste A
Springdale, AR 72764

ĒLXR Yoga Lounge and Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum partnered to present our first edition of ‘Conversations for Change’ – A Film Screening and Group Discussion to take on the topics of inclusiveness, anti-racist practice, and white privilege.

We aim to create a thoughtful workspace for women of color and white women to join together to discuss how we can work as a community to fight oppressive social norms and better understand each other. Most especially, we want to create an entry point for white women who want to participate as anti-racist allies but may not have the right tool-kit or know how to enter the conversation.

We are here to talk through it! We screened Chelsea Handler’s Netflix feature ‘Hello, Privilege. It’s me, Chelsea.’ and used it as a jumping off point for a group discussion.

People brought their own beverages, snacks, and open mind. Everyone came prepared to speak openly and honestly about their questions and experiences. This event helped expand our vocabulary for discussions on inclusivity and the importance of anti-racist practice.

12.4.19 IN CONVERSATION: INFLUENCERS

On Wednesday, December 4th, at Dry Storage in Rogers, this panel met to teach the community about their experiences as a few of Northwest Arkansas’s local influencers. The panelists included:

Dominique Blake – Olympic Medalist and Founder/CEO of The DVB Group
Nicole Calhoun – PhD/ ERY, Yoga Enthusiast and Owner of ELXR Yoga Lounge
Sarah Conley – Content Creator, Marketing Consultant and Published Writer
2 Locas Brand – Jennifer Evans and Blanca Maldonado, Entrepreneurs and Community Leaders

Moderated by Rachel Fox Kipphut, Founder of NWA GIRL GANG, we learned from our panelists about how they became an influencer and how adversity pushed them to become who they are today, how they market to their target audience but strive to reach people who are different than them, how they continue to learn and grow as individuals within the community, and how they see the creative landscape developing and changing in our region.

10.3.19 FUTURE OF FASHION

The Future of Fashion was the Opening Night of NWA Fashion Week | Fall 2019 with runway shows benefitting Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum.

A one of a kind event encompassing The Future of Fashion, featured 7 brilliant designers’ collections that were developed during the first-ever NWAFW Designer Cohort Program. This was the first runway show that is a COMPETITION between designers and a fundraising event for Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum.

Deanah Baker- Senior Vice President of Walmart Apparel US, Jayne Harkness- President of J.H.G & Partners and Business Mentor for the Council of Fashion Designers of America, and Gabrielle Korn- Fashion Writer, Editor and former Editor in Chief of Nylon Magazine, were guest panel judges at the event.

Deanah Baker and Gabrielle Korn also spoke on the impact of fashion on the culture and industry of the heartland, the current state of fashion, and more.

The winning designers of the event were Brandy Lee of Big Sister and Markia Herron of Herron Hats. Brandy Lee will have her most commercially viable garment produced in limited quantity for retail in the NWA area. Both of these designers will also have the educational opportunity of a lifetime with a mentorship with Jayne Harkness.

6.28.19 DESIGNER POP-UP SHOP AND PANEL

The Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum is pioneering a new way to envision the fashion industry in Arkansas. In June 2019 we hosted a five designer pop-up shop in Downtown Springdale to give our audience an opportunity to get up close and personal with some of their favorite designers custom pieces. Following the pop-up shop our CEO, Robin Wallis Atkinson, sat down with the five designers to discuss their practice, the state of the growing fashion industry in Arkansas, and the potential future for micro-batch manufacturing based in our state. Designers A’Lyece Lenae, Sindhu Varagani, Brandy Lee, Alyssa Graves, and Shamirra Clark joined us for this lively and in-depth discussion.

6.6.19 THE STATE OF PHOTOGRAPHY PANEL

The Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum aims to promote inclusion, diversity and change to industry standards by rethinking the process of image production. As content creators, we have a privileged opportunity to change norms through thoughtful content production. Four of the most well respected photographers in the area discussed the importance of image making and the responsibility of being an a creative figure in our community.

Our panel of photographers Brandon WattsJessica WhalenMeredith Mashburn, and Miles Witt Boyer, led by marketing expert Stephanie G Funk, discussed how the photography landscape has changed since the re-emergence of NWA Fashion Week and how their practice has grown or been influenced by their collaborations with it.

They shared insight into the hard work and intellectual processes that have helped them rise to the top of their industry. Additionally, this panel provided insight into how Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum is working with creatives to change the image of Northwest Arkansas.

From Left to Right: Brandon Watts of B. Watts Photography, Jessica Whalen of Jessica Whalen Films, Miles Witt Boyer of Miles Witt Boyer Collective, Stephanie Funk (moderator), & Meredith Mashburn of Meredith Mashbrun Photography

4.6.19 IN CONVERSATION: GABRIELLE KORN

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum partnered with BlakeSt. to host an afternoon with Nylon Editor-in-Chief Gabrielle Korn. The editor shared her journey and led a group exercise in editorial content selection.
Watch the entire event here:

4.3.19 NET IMPACT SUSTAINABILITY PANEL

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum partnered with the University of Arkansas and Crystal Bridges Museum. Net Impact is a nonprofit membership organization for students and professionals interested in programs and networking events centered on topics such as corporate social responsibility, social entrepreneurship, nonprofit management, international development, and environmental sustainability. Dr. Lance Cheramie of University of Arkansas, Shaul Cohen of Jordache (NYC), Gerson Fajardo of Walmart, Inc, and Alyssa Bird of Regenerous Designs shared how to make the fashion industry more sustainable in terms of design and product development, manufacturing, retailing, and education.

1.10.19 IN CONVERSATION: LINDA ROWE THOMAS

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted an evening with Designer and Motivational Speaker Linda Rowe Thomas. The designer shared her amazing story as well as one of her most recent collections.
Watch the entire event here:

11.1.18 IN CONVERSATION: KORTO MOMOLU

Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum hosted an evening with Project Runway Alumni Korto Momolu. The designer showed a selection of works from a recent collection inspired by her frequent collaborator Michael Knight.
Watch the entire event here:

Korto Momolu (pronounced Cut • Toe – Mo • Mo • Lu) is a Liberian-born fashion designer and stylist is stamping her global brand on fashion-forward women’s wear and accessories. Korto is inspired by her African roots and celebrate the essence of her rich heritage through the use of traditional, luxury fabrics; skins; mixed prints, etc. A graduate of the L’Academies des Couturiers Design Institute in Ottawa, Ontario, Korto also studied at the renowned Parsons School of Design in New York City while working as an independent fashion designer. Prior to arriving in Canada in 1990, Korto and her family had to flee Liberia following a civil war. In 2014, she competed on the third season of Project Runway All Stars and finished in second place. Most recently, Korto unveiled her spring/summer 2019 collection during New York Fashion Week – which was a tribute to her late friend, and former Project Runway All Stars castmate, Mychael Knight, who passed in 2017. Momolu was highlighted as a ‘Top 5 Designers to Watch’ by New York Magazine, and presently makes her home with her husband and two children in Little Rock, Arkansas.

All pictures taken by Joshua Sagar.

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