About a month after the protests for the Black Lives Matter movement erupted, Dior chose to have a complete white cast for their Haute Couture short film.
I must say that Dior did execute the short film, Le Mythe Dior, well. It is directed my Italian director Matteo Garrone, and this was his first fashion project. While I don’t think there was much emphasis on the designs themselves and rather the world of fantasy, whimsicalness, and wonder, it was ten minutes of beautiful escapism.
The film reinterpreted the Théâtre de la Mode tradition of 1945 right after the war. French Couturiers had to ration with fabrics and conserve resources, so they created the Théâtre de la Mode, which is a traveling fashion doll house with miniature gowns. Dior did the same in the short film, and the 30 Avenue Montaigne couture doll house traveled throughout the enchanted forest. All of the miniature gowns were all hand-crafted as if they were the real sizes. The scenes reminded me a bit of Alice in Wonderland which is my favorite film. But there’s one thing that stood out to me more than the clothes and scenery, the cast was entirely white, even the atelier staff.
I was a bit surprised just because the runway shows for Dior are always pretty well diverse when it comes to including people of all skin colors; not size inclusive though, which is something that every fashion house has to work on. As the first woman lead of Dior, I expect Maria Grazia Chiuri to embrace diversity. Although there is applauding of the short film, the all white casting didn’t go unnoticed and people are upset with the house not following through with their statements in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Chiuri took inspiration for the collection from female Surrealist artists such as Jacqueline Lamba and Lee Miller. But in my opinion, many of the designs were not show stopping. For Dior I feel as though they haven’t done anything revolutionary in many seasons, and they aren’t the only house doing so. I find that several of the silhouettes are repeated. There were some designs I absolutely love, like the pale gray feathered gown and the divine black ruffled cape. The pieces reflect the nature aspect with coral and gold tones along with grays.
It was nature and transformation, as the nymphs, mermaids, and lovers were embraced with the 30 Avenue Montaigne doll house. Couture has always been a form of escapism and magic, and Dior did a wonderful job with transforming the magic of a couture show to our screens.
Xoxo, MᶜKenna Ramona Jennings
Follow me on Instagram: @ mckennaramonajennings