Background

Michelle holds an M.A. in history of design and material culture from the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum/Parsons School of Design and a B.A. in art history from Fordham University, New York. She has worked as a researcher in European Sculpture and Decorative Arts department, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and in the Education department at the Cooper Hewitt. She has also worked in publishing and art galleries including Phaidon Press, Inc., Artforum International,Peter Freeman, Inc and Christies International.

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Research Interests

Michelle Labrague’s research interests include history of American environmental movement since the 1960s and its articulations in the fields of fashion and design history and practice.

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Ongoing Research

Her dissertation, which examines SLOW (as in slow food and slow living) + Fashion, explores the visual and textual materials of American activewear brands Patagonia and ESPRIT Ecollection as products of and as forums for technological and environmental debates within California fashion and design. By situating these materials within broader socio-cultural concerns regarding speed, technology, consumerism and the environment, Michelle shows how the activewear sector of the fashion industry attempts to reconcile the ideological purpose and function of fashion with environmental concerns

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