Who run the world? Girls, it happens Beyonce is not the only one who supports woman power, Maria Grazia Chiuri made a strong statement through her designs for the fashion house – Christain Dior. The designs of the Dior SS’20 collection was inspired by Judy Chicago, an 80-year old feminist pioneer. The glistering show expressed the goddess expressions and struggles. The show took place at the expansive garden of Paris’s Musee Rodin, a structure called ‘The Female Divine’. Inside the building was Chicago’s past work(signature needle work) for an Indian charity that supports the teaching of art and craft to girls.
When Judy Chicago visited Dior show room a few days before the show, Oh my god, that coat! I was like this,” Judy Chicago exclaimed to Maria Grazia Chiuri, mimicking heart palpitations. World’s most revered feminist artist lusts over a coat like all of us is a very reassuring thing for a woman’s confidence.
The runway was filled with liquid gold in the form of fringe dresses, metallic coats, suits, gowns and dresses. There were browns and pop of colour too. From Chicago’s infinite astonished question, “What if women ruled the world?”. Maria Churi answered back with her collection’s designs, that are subtle with dusty gold shades, peplos silhouete, comfortable and comforting incredibly artisanal evening-wear.
“I’ve made a collection that’s desirable for our clients. They feel themselves in our clothes, they feel confident,” Chiuri said, while reflecting on her work at Dior. “The reaction is very positive in couture – and in prêt-a-porter – which I guess means that what I’m doing is right.”
“When you go to the atelier, you see the craftsmanship. But in the show, it’s not visible. It’s crazy,” Chiuri warned Chicago.
When Dior designed the SS’20 haute couture collection, the works and craftsmanship involve were obvious when they get to the runway, how each strand in a fringed dress were beaded one third an inch at a time. The work that entails the use of single strands of fabric to make a dress from top to the buttom, all these have proved to us that couture is about authenticity, artisanal excellence and making women look beautiful.
“In terms of what I did and my relationship with the history of needlework and needle-workers, my work and sensibility have more in common with couture than the contemporary art world,” Chicago said, “which has no understanding or respect for craft, and puts down things that have historically had to do with women. And it was a revelation to me. The reason so many women wanted to work with me” “is because they were needleworkers, and one of the big questions in their mind was: Why isn’t needlework considered art? The idea that they were going to work with an artist was more important to them than money.”
“I want to be an activist for the new generation, to make young girls feel confident that they can be designers, artists, in charge of big brands. I want to give them hope that it’s possible,” she said. “Not easy, but possible.”
The collection as a whole was also an expression of flamboyant showstopping and dramatic fashion, thanks to Chicago’s haute couture legacy that made a woman like Maria Chiuri. Chiuri said; “I don’t know why, but it’s necessary for me to do this. It’s not possible to be a woman designer at a big house like Dior and not give your point of view about femininity. I felt so strongly that Dior was a feminine brand that I found the question of my being a woman designer a little bit annoying,” she said, remembering the response to her first few seasons at the house. “In my work, I try to find an answer to the question of why Dior is a feminine brand.”
Here are the full collection below: