Immerse yourself in the heart of the Surrealist movement with Dior’s otherworldly Haute Couture collection
The history of haute couture is intimately linked with the history of modern art. The couturier is an artist unto himself and the word “atelier” designates equally the studio of an artist or that of a designer. Located somewhere between dream and reality, or imagination and realization, Maria Grazia Chiuri, the Artistic Director of the House’s women’s collections, pursues her research and explorations for the Christian Dior Spring 2018 Haute Couture collection.
Surrealism guided Maria Grazia Chiuri in creating a collection predominantly in black in white sprinkled with illusion and surprise. Generous pleats on a white evening dress are etched in black like the pages of a book, while caging, a recurring motif in Surrealist works, is transformed into a black mesh fabric that hugs the body and underscores transparency as silvery fishnet mingles with the density of velvet. But above all, it’s the charisma of the artist Leonor Fini that defines this collection’s strict yet radical attitude. Leonor Fini, who left Italy for Paris in the Thirties, held her first exhibition in Christian Dior’s gallery and befriended the designer from that moment onward.
Maria Grazia Chiuri draws on these as inspiration in a series of suits that recalibrates Dior’s curves to today’s tastes, paired with skirts of multiple contrasts.Ever faithful to the Surrealist tradition of deconstructed forms, accessories make their presence felt in a whimsical way: a fishnet stocking veils a sandal, while gloves clutch an ankle. It’s this way of seeing and being seen, with a point of view that draws on the unconscious and today’s world, that Maria Grazia Chiuri uses as a foil for embroideries and other embellishments. On a dress illuminated by a mirage of peacock feathers, precious and delicate ornaments become eyes that behold and express mystery — as well as the spiritual power of today’s women.
Watch as Emily Blunt, Haley Bennett, Natalia Vodianova, Monica Bellucci, Sasha Pivovarova and a number of other stars share their impressions of the Haute Couture show and its Surrealist set.