Areas of Expertise: 19th and 20th-century fashion and material culture, museology
Annette Becker joined the College of Visual Arts and Design staff in September 2016. She has a B.A. in Art History and English from the University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kan., and an M.A. in Art History from the University of North Texas, Denton, Texas, where she is pursuing a doctoral degree in history. She also has previous work experiences at art and history museums around the country.
At the TFC, Becker has curated the exhibitions "Men Bloom" and “Reimagining the Kimono” at NorthPark Center; “Sportswear to Athleisure: The Creation of Comfortable Clothing” at UNT ArtSpace, and “On Bodies” at The Goss-Michael Foundation, all in Dallas. To promote accessibility to the collection, she also regularly speaks to university classes and community groups and facilitates research visits engaging the TFC’s holdings of nearly 20,000 historic and designer garments and accessories.
In the TFC, 1,400 pairs of shoes, 2,500 hats and 750 handbags are gathered within UNT’s nearly 20,000-piece collection. As D Magazine’s November 2019 cover story details, UNT is home to “a trove of designer labels including 387 designs by Hubert Givenchy, 301 by Oscar de la Renta, 151 from the House of Dior and an impressive 340 by Cristobal Balenciaga.” Originally started by the Dallas-based department store Neiman Marcus in the late 1930s, UNT became the custodian of a few thousand garments via a 1972-donation to support design research at UNT and today is a valuable historical resource for researchers and students. About 90 percent of the collection, which also was covered recently by Denton County Magazine, came from individual donors, most with connections to North Texas.
GQ magazine, May 7, 2020: Texas Fashion Collection "...is now one of the most significant fashion collections in the United States." Read the article.
WFAA Feature Story, Feb. 9, 2020: Where a Closet Full of History Hangs in Texas