Talking to women through women: that’s what he stands for Maria Grazia Chiuri in her role as creative director of the maison Dior. And it is precisely this mission that once again draws the powerful message brought to the catwalk with the fashion show of the Dior Haute Couture Spring-Summer 2023 collection. An exceptional result know-howthe clothes explore the female dimension by enhancing the body, yet they remain only the means of an even more noble will: to amplify the voice of women. Complicit as in every Dior fashion show is the scenographywhich Maria Grazia Chiuri has entrusted to the artist this time Mickalene Thomasrepresentative of the black community.
The famous actor, having given up his role as Batman, slips into those designed by Dior to attend the brand’s fashion show in Paris. Fur coat and pleated skirt for a whole new (and surprising) image. The first paragraph of a whole new chapter in his novel of his style?
«I am honored to have collaborated with Maria Grazia Chiuri and Dior – Mickalene Thomas wrote on Instagram. – Through giant-format portraits, the scenography of the show aims to be the epitome of a new pantheon of extraordinary female figures, of color and of mixed ethnicities».
The French maison has also collaborated with Indian artisans from Mumbai so that the vision conceived by Mickalene Thomas could materialize by giving space and visibility to manufacturing techniques beyond the borders of France: «The scenography was created through elaborate embroidery on a printed base , made possible thanks to the Chanakya Ateliers and the Chanakya School of Craft», continued the artist.
As many as thirteen are the outstanding women of Maria Grazia Chiuri celebrated by and in the project: «The inspiration – said Mickalene Thomas – was developed around the conversation about the importance of black female role models who have broken down racial barriers». Fashion, cinema, music, politics and activism thus meet in a puzzle of names and faces sharing the same perseverance, audacity and elegance. Women whose talent has been hindered in the course of their careers, but who – as the artist herself reiterates – «have achieved and accomplished incredible feats, which justify this noteworthy celebration by a brand such as Dior».
The same inspiration for the Dior Haute Couture Spring-Summer 2023 collection revolves around the name of Josephine Baker (1906 -1975), also celebrated in the scenography. Originally from Missouri, she was a dancer and performer, as well as an activist for the civil rights of African Americans. She moved to Paris in 1925 and triumphed as a prima ballerina in the Revue Negre at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées. Having become a Parisian icon, he was a client of Christian Dior and Pierre Balmain. On August 28, 1963, he spoke during the March on Washington next to Martin Luther King. He adopted twelve children, whom he called his “rainbow tribe.” Her elegance – a constant between dressing room, stage and reality – inspired Maria Grazia Chiuri, who evokes her charm through coats, dressing gowns, slip dresses in silk or velvet.
In this pantheon built on the history of thirteen exceptional women, the name of Diahann Carroll (1935-2019), who in 1962 became the first African-American woman ever to win the Tony Award for Best Actress. There is also that of Dorothy Dandridge (1922-1965), first African-American in Hollywood to be nominated for a leading role (in 1954, with the role in the film Carmen Jonesdirected by Otto Preminger). It’s still, Marpessa Dawn (1934-2008), winner of the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival in 1959 and the Oscar for Best Foreign Film in 1960.
Always from the world of entertainment come the names of the extraordinary and unforgettable Nina Simone (1933-2003), that of the multifaceted artist Eartha Kitt (1927-2008), the jazz pianist and singer Hazel Scott (1920-1981), as well as that of Lena Horne (1917-2010), first African-American woman nominated for the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance in Jamaica. In the musical itself, he also stood out Josephine Premice (1926-2001), who received her first Tony Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress.
Dulcis in fundo, the great black icons of international fashion. Ophelia DeVore (1922-2014), one of the first African-American models, originally from South Carolina. Helen Williams (1937-), who also walked for Dior during his career. Naomi Sims (1948-2009), first African-American woman to grace the cover of Fashion of the Timessupplement of The New York Times. And obviously Donyale Luna (1945-1979): the first “Black Supermodel”. In January of 1965, she was the first African American to pose for Harper’s Bazaar in ninety-eight years of publications. That record was followed by another: in March 1966, Donyale Luna was the first African American model to appear on the cover of British Vogue. She was also Salvador Dalí’s muse, director Federico Fellini wanted her in his Satyricon (1969), and counted big names in fashion in his runway portfolio, such as Courrèges, Saint Laurent and Paco Rabanne. Long live the exceptional women of Maria Grazia Chiuri.
Chic and gritty was the choice of Pierre Casiraghi’s wife, dressed in tweed in the front row of Dior’s Haute Couture fashion show. From head to toe
Source: Vanity Fair
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