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Dr Wessie Ling

Department: Arts

A trained cultural historian and visual artist, Ling uses academic writing and visual art practice to address her work. The discourse of cultural identities in the production of fashion and cultural property of fashion are common themes in her work; in particular, the construction, expression and creation of an identity when producing fashion, its relation with the transnational locality and the tension within and outside of the fashion system in which it is produced. Fashion as an attitude, an idea or a resource, its pull-push force, the juxtaposition of its use and being used by it are threads in both her written and art- work. Author of Fusionable Cheongsam (2007), she has written widely on the socio-cultural revolution of the Chinese dress through which dissected the material culture in China. Such a geographic focus has led her to develop study in the 20thC Chinese fashion in which inter-East Asian (Chinese, Japanese, Korean) cultural dynamics in the making of fashion is examined in an AHRC awarded project on Writing and Translating Modern Design Histories for the Global World (2012-4). Subsequently followed is an edited volume on Fashion in Multiple Chinas: Chinese Styles in the Transglobal Landscape (2018, IB Tauris) which studies the making of fashion in China through post-1980s taking into account not only the fast-developing country itself but also its diaspora and cultural interaction with Asia and Europe.In 2018, she is ASEAN Research Fellow at the Research Institute for Languages and Cultures of Asia (RILCA) in Mahidol University (Bangkok) and Rita Bolland Research Fellow for the Textile and Fashion Study in Tropenmuseum (Research Centre for Material Culture, Leiden). In her visual art practice, she uses text and installation to create work that addresses the cultural properties of fashion. Works were exhibited in Saint Dominic's Priory (2016, UK: Newcastle upon Tyne), Oxfordshire Visual Arts Development Agency (OVADA, 2015, UK: Oxford), Danson House (2013, UK: Bexleyheath), Brunei Gallery (2012, London: SOAS), Saltram House (2012, Plymouth: National Trust), Victoria & Albert Museum (2011, London) among others. 

Dr Ling served as the Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees for the Centre for Contemporary Chinese Art (2009-2015, CFCCA, Manchester) and is retained as the artistic committee member of the organization.

At Northumbria, she is the team member of Visual and Material Cultures. She leads CloTHINK, a research group on fashion, textile, visual and material cultures, for which regular semester meetings and a guest speaker programme are held.


Wessie Ling


  • Fashion PhD June 30 2001
  • Fellow (FHEA) Higher Education Academy (HEA) 2013

Key Publications

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • Apparel and Fashion Design in Hong Kong, Ling, W. 31 Oct 2019, Encyclopedia of East Asian Design , London ; New York, Bloomsbury
  • Apparel and Fashion Design in Taiwan, Ling, W. 31 Oct 2019, Encyclopedia of East Asian Design , London and New York, Bloomsbury
  • Critical Studies in Global Fashion, Ling, W., Lorusso, M., Segre Reinach, S. 23 Dec 2019, In: Zone Moda Journal
  • Fashion-Making and Co-Creation in the Transglobal Landscape, Ling, W., Reinach, S. Nov 2019, In: Modern Italy
  • Global Fashion as a Tool in the Ethnographic Museum, Ling, W., Van Dartel, D. 23 Dec 2019, In: Zone Moda Journal
  • Italianerie, Marinelli, M., Ling, W. Nov 2019, In: Modern Italy
  • A Bag of Remembrance, Ling, W. 1 Feb 2018, European Fashion, Manchester, UK, Manchester University Press
  • Beneath the Co-Created Chinese Fashion, Ling, W. 20 Apr 2018, Fashion in Multiple Chinas, London, Bloomsbury
  • Enhancing apparel data based on fashion theory for developing a novel apparel style recommendation system, Guan, C., Qin, S., Ling, W., Long, Y. 27 Mar 2018, Trends and Advances in Information Systems and Technologies, Springer
  • Fashion-Making in the Transglobal Landscape, Ling, W., Segre-Reinach, S. 20 Apr 2018, Fashion in Multiple Chinas, London, Bloomsbury

PGR Supervision

  • Hayley Mardon Start: 01/10/2016
  • Cristiana Katagiri Becoming Brazilian: Relations of power and aesthetic within fashion making in Brazil Start: 01/02/2016
  • Rima Darras Jordanian T-shirt: A hybrid Medium for Affirming and Preserving Jordanian National and Cultural Identity Start: 01/10/2015


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