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Chovan, Gail

Gail Chovan

Assistant Professor of Instruction
Division of Textiles and Apparel


Phone: 512-471-4836

Office Location
GEA 237

Postal Address
200 W 24TH ST
AUSTIN, TX 78712

Educator as well as clothing designer, Gail Chovan specializes in conceptual design, artisanal techniques, and the history of costume. While working in the department as an Assistant Professor of Instruction, she presents the first introduction to garment construction.  She focuses on the genesis of ideas and exploration of inspiration while instilling strong technical skills in her students that continue on into their senior year and the development of their own collections.

The Historic Textile and Apparel Collection for the Department of Textiles and Apparel Design has also been reinvigorated under Chovan’s guidance as she teaches the courses of History of Dress and Cultural Change 1 & 2. The collection houses over 6000 pieces of clothing and artifacts that have been donated to the school. She and her students put together 3 exhibits a year.

During her summers, Chovan has taught courses in Fashion & Design and Advanced draping at the Cours de Civilisation Française de la Sorbonne as well as at the Paris College of Art in France. She established and serves as the Director of the TXA Paris Study Abroad program that takes place for 4 weeks as a Maymester in France.

Her personal focus in her clothing design has now shifted away from traditional industry expectations to solo gallery presentations and installations of her recent collections yet she is still acknowledged as an Austin Trailblazer in fashion and has been awarded the recognition as Best Designer in the community. She is currently pursuing an MLA in Museum Studies through Harvard University.





Degrees Held:

Diplôme, Level 2, ESMOD International, Paris, France. –  Stylisme

Diplôme, Licence Pro, Ecole Duperré, Paris, France – Métiers de Mode

M.A. Université de Paris lll, Paris, France & New York University, New York, New York – French Literature

B.A. Gettysburg College, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania – French & Education


Professional Affiliations and Global Community Involvement:

Copenhagen Summit on Sustainability in Fashion 2018, Copenhagen, Denmark

Educator’s Conference 2018, selected presenter

ITAA, member: International Textiles and Apparel Association

CSA, member: Costume Society of America

American Gateways, interpreter for West African refugees

Petite Ecole Internationale, board member

Pacific Northwest College of Art, graduate school mentor

Research Interests:

  • “Le Système de la Mode” by Roland Barthes, the study of conceptual design and the semiology of clothing without corporeal constraints – exploration of the skirt
  • Development of the system of Blind Draping. Fabric manipulation without sight.

Recent Shows:

2018   “No Trace of Now Will Remain”, Women & Their Work Gallery, Austin, Texas.

2017,  “Good Mourning ‘Tis of Thee”, Group show: Co-Lab Gallery, Austin, Texas.

2017:  “Installation of Boxes”, El Cosmico, Marfa, Texas

2017:  “Defiance”, an installation.  Galerie Virginie Louvet, Paris, France & Austin, TX

2016:  “Less is More”, Galerie Eva Hober & VOID showroom, Paris ,France.

Courses Taught:

316L: Apparel 1

264L: Advanced Apparel Design / Senior Collections

264L: Advanced Apparel Design / Draping

214L: Product Development Lab

205L: Introductory Textiles Lab

325L: History of Dress and Cultural Change 1: Ancient Times to the Renaissance

325M: History of Dress and Cultural Change 2: Baroque to the Contemporary

355R: Independent Study in the Historical Textile and Apparel Collection

365R: French Fashion: History and Techniques (TXA Paris Study Abroad)