Victoria L. Rovine specializes in African art with a focus on African textiles and dress practices, and on Africa’s presence in Western visual culture, particularly in early twentieth century Europe. She received her MA and PhD from Indiana University. Prof. Rovine has conducted research in Mali since the early 1990s, and has also worked in Senegal, South Africa, Ghana, and elsewhere in Africa.
Her first book, Bogolan: Shaping Culture Through Cloth in Contemporary Mali (Smithsonian Institution Press, 2001; republished by Indiana University Press, 2008) traces the many manifestations of a distinctively Malian textile in Bamako’s fine art, tourist art, and fashion markets. Her second book, African Fashion, Global Style: Histories, Innovations, and Ideas You Can Wear (Indiana University Press, 2015) explores the innovations of African designers, the changing roles and meanings of historical dress styles in Africa, and the influences of African style on European fashion design, past and present. The book aims to expand conventional definitions of fashion design, and to bring Africa fully into the story of global fashion design. She has published widely on African fashion designers, contemporary African artists, and the representation of Africa in Europe through visual culture.