Kent State University Museum Announces New Exhibition: ‘Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman: Dazzling Day and Night’

KENT, OHIO – The Kent State University Museum is pleased to announce their latest exhibition: "Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman: Dazzling Day and Night." The exhibition will open Friday, May 31, 2024, and will continue until Monday, July 28, 2025.

"Dazzling Day and Night" celebrates the creative legacy of the Kent State University Museum’s founders, Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman.

"In 2025, the KSU Museum celebrates its 40th anniversary. To mark the occasion, the museum will honor the creative legacy of our founders Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman. Their initial gift of 4,000 garments, textiles and accessories includes many day dresses and cocktail attire from their fashion business, Jerry Silverman Inc. The Seventh Avenue showroom of Jerry Silverman Inc. was among the most successful labels of women's better dresses during the 1960s and 1970s. Their garments were popular with American clients, first ladies and celebrities because of their timeless, stylish designs. 'Dazzling Day and Night' showcases dresses and ensembles, one-of-a-kind evening wear made for celebrity friends, photographs, advertisements and fashion sketches," said Sarah J. Rogers, director of the Kent State University Museum.

Shannon Rodgers, a native Ohioan, began his career as a costume designer, first on Broadway and then for movies such as "Cleopatra" and "The Adventures of Marco Polo." Silverman studied law but eventually switched careers after working with clients in the fashion industry. Silverman and Rodgers' partnership began in 1946 when Silverman hired Rodgers to work for fashion company Martini Designed as a designer.

After speaking with a member of Kent State's Chestnut Society in the late 1970s, Rodgers and Silverman proposed a fashion show at Kent State, which would serve as a premier for the fall "Jerry Silverman" collection and present many historic costumes from Rodgers' collection. The 1979 show at the Kent Student Center Ballroom was an overwhelming success and led to Silverman and Rodgers’ further involvement with the university, including the renovation of Rockwell Hall and the creation of the Kent State University Museum and the School of Fashion.

The exhibition will highlight over 30 ensembles from the late 1950s when Rodgers began designing in New York City through the 1970s. The selections of stylish daywear and elegant evening wear also provide a time capsule of American styles during these decades. Rodgers and Silverman were able to translate the latest designs from the Parisian runways into looks their American clients would want. "Dazzling Day and Night" will also include sketches, photographs, and advertising— especially their famous New Yorker Magazine ads “Just show me the Jerry Silverman!”

"Dazzling Day and Night" is curated by KSU Museum Director, Sarah Rogers.

Producers Sponsor: Leslie Resnik

A sustainability grant from the Ohio Arts Council

Ohio Arts Council


The Kent State University Museum is located at 515 Hilltop Drive, at the corner of East Main Street and South Lincoln Street in Kent, Ohio. It features more than 29,000 pieces in its collection, amassed from many generous donors. The museum is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. and Sunday from noon - 4 p.m. Tickets can be purchased in person at the museum or in advance through the museum’s online ticketing service.

Admission is $10 for adults, $7 for seniors and $5 for children ages 5 to 18. The museum is free for children under 5 and for those with a Kent State ID. Sunday admission is free for all ages. Parking is free for all museum attendees. Patrons should use the allotted museum spaces in the Rockwell Hall parking lot. For more information, please call 330-672-3450 or visit


Image Credits: KSUM 1998.50.2 ab, 1983.1.641, 1983.1.643, 1983.1.662 ab; Rodgers designer, Silverman/Rodgers Collection

POSTED: Thursday, May 23, 2024 08:57 AM
Updated: Monday, June 10, 2024 12:50 PM