Ruth Carter

Join Academy Award-winning costume designer Ruth Carter on June 8 for her closing keynote presentation on the power of storytelling and representation in design.




Ruth E. Carter is the Academy Award-winning American film costume designer known for turning the Black Panther superhero into an African King, making history as the first Black person to win in the category, and earning Marvel Studios their first Oscar recognition.

Carter pays tribute to the people of Africa through the costumes in Black Panther and Black Panther 2: Wakanda Forever. She fuses traditional and contemporary while incorporating technology to deliver fashion and function, creating Afrofuturistic pieces that empower the female form and honor ancient cultures, and invoking a deep sense of representation unlike any other costumes experienced on screen.

Over three decades in film, television, and theater, Carter has earned seventy credits and collaborated with prolific directors, including Spike Lee, Steven Spielberg, Ava DuVernay, and Ryan Coogler. Carter’s costumes based on real and imaginative characters provide an arc to the narratives of African Americans. From Do the Right Thing, Malcolm X, What’s Love Got to Do With It, Amistad, The Butler, Marshall, Selma, Dolemite Is My Name, Coming 2 America to Black Panther; her devotion to retraining the eye to see beauty through costume design and telling stories that enrich the humanity of the Black experience cements her legacy as a preeminent voice and expert on period genres and Afro aesthetics.

Carter’s outstanding costume design work has been honored with Academy Award nominations for Malcolm X (1993) and Amistad (1998) and an Emmy nomination for the miniseries reboot of Roots (2016). The impact of her career in filmmaking has been recognized with the Costume Designers Guild’s Career Achievement Award (2019) and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (2021). Carter is a member of the board of governors for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences.

Event details
Saturday, June 8, 8:30–9:30am
Walter E. Washington Convention Center

Register using program code GS300 >