Professor Carol Tulloch

TrAIN Member

I was born in England of Jamaican parents and originally trained as a fashion and textiles designer. I gained my Masters degree in the History of Design at the V&A/RCA, London. The combined elements of my personal and professional life have shaped my interest in studying dress and black identities as dialogues on the ‘self’. This has been debated through published articles such as ‘Out of Many, One People’?: The Relativity of Dress, Race and Ethnicity to Jamaica, 1880-1907 (1998), ‘“My Man, Let Me Pull Your Coat to Something: Malcolm X’ (2001), and ‘Strawberries and Cream: Dress, Migration and the Quintessence of Englishness’ (2002).

Curating is another aspect of my research practice. As curator of the Archives and Museum of Black Heritage project I organised a series of exhibitions which placed material culture as the catalyst of enquiry into black British history, cultural heritage and issues of place. These included: Nails, Weaves and Naturals: Hairstyles and Nail Art of the African Diaspora, A Day of Record (2001), Tools of the Trade: Memories of Black British Hairdressing, (2001), and Picture This: Representations of Black People in Product Promotion (2002).

In my present professional post I co-curated the exhibition Black British Style (2004), and edited the book Black Style that accompanied the show. These latter projects have been instrumental in the expansion of my research interests to include narrative studies and authenticity. I am also the principal investigator of the Arts and Humanities Research Council funded project, Dress and the African Diaspora Network (2006-7), an international endeavour to develop critical thinking on this subject.


International Fashion Showcase Award: Botswana, Nigeria and Sierra Leone (2012), British Fashion council.

A Riot of Our Own, Photography of Syd Shelton, 2012, Gaerlija Makina, Pula, Croatia.

Handmade Tales: Women and Domestic Crafts, 2010/11, Women’s Library, London.

Related Projects

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    Dress and the African Diaspora Network

    Led by Carol Tulloch, TrAIN Senior Research Fellow, the Dress & the African Diaspora Network is supported by the Diasporas, Migration and Identities programme to provide a series of focused research forums over two years.

    Africa, Europe, the Caribbean, South America and the U.
    Find out more about Dress and the African Diaspora Network

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    The Birth of Cool

    The Birth of Cool considers the individual and group stylepractices in different parts of the African as prisms of cultural and social commentary. Based on case studies of either complete looks or a single garment, with a daterange from the late 19th century to the 21st century, thebook considers expanded notions of place, heritage and auto/biography.
    Find out more about The Birth of Cool

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    11 September 2012 – 23 September 2012
    Galerija Makina, Pula

    The exhibition is part of “TU SMO” 3 (We Are Here 3) an international multimedia event organised by The Museum of Contemporary Art Istria.

    The exhibition ‘A Riot Of Our Own’ looks at the Rock Against Racism (RAR) Movement of 1976 to1981, through 41 photographs by Syd Shelton.
    Find out more about A RIOT OF OUR OWN

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    Kimathi Donkor: Queens of the Undead

    Kimathi Donkor’s dramatic large-scale paintings express pathos, wrath, devotion and irony. This exhibition includes a series of new commissions by the artist celebrating heroic black women from history, shown alongside selected earlier works.
    Find out more about Kimathi Donkor: Queens of the Undead

Related Events

Related People

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    Nicola Stylianou

    Completed PhD - Producing and collecting for Empire: African textiles within the V&A Museum

    Despite billing itself as “the world’s greatest museum of art and design, with collections unrivalled in their scope and diversity” during the nineteenth and most of the twentieth century it was the V&A’s general policy not to collect African artefacts. This was largely due to a curatorial division between objects associated with “art” and “ethnography.
    Find out more about Nicola Stylianou

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