Naomi Sims (March 30, 1948 – August 1, 2009) was a fashion icon, entrepreneur, author, and one of the first “supermodels”. Born in Oxford, MS, Sims grew up in Pittsburgh, PA, and graduated from Westinghouse High School in Homewood. In 1966, she moved to New York City to attend New York University and the Fashion Institute of Technology. She was the first Black model to grace the covers of The New York Times, Fashions of the Times in 1967, Ladies’ Home Journal in 1968, and Life magazine in 1969. In 1972, she landed on the cover of Interview magazine with Andy Warhol. Sims wrote four books on health and beauty, and founded a successful cosmetic and wig company.
Naomi Sims: (Super) Model Citizen is an unprecedented exhibition that pays homage to a lessor known yet groundbreaking figure who revolutionized the fashion industry and set the stage for future generations of models and fashion icons. This exhibition is a visual and narrative journey that celebrates her life, her impact on the world of fashion, beauty, health, and art, and her advocacy for true diversity and inclusivity within the industry. Naomi Sims: (Super) Model Citizen showcases a compelling collection of iconic and rarely seen photographs and archival material that capture the grace, beauty, and fortitude of this trailblazing supermodel.
NEWS ABOUT THE EXHIBITION
Pittsburgh NPR’s coverage of the exhibition found here.
Public press release about the exhibition found here.