Dior chose Athens, the cradle of Western civilization and of European arts, to present its Cruise 2022 collection. In the heart of the city dedicated to Athena, Maria Grazia Chiuri reinvents her genealogy and tweaks the codes of the house
Inspired by a series of photographs from Monsieur Dior’s haute couture lines, taken near the Pantheon in 1951, Maria Grazia Chiuri reinvents her genealogy for the Dior Cruise 2022 collection. In the heart of the city dedicated to Athena, she also tweaks the codes where art lies not in the object created, but in one’s ability to create, such as the peplum.
The show took place in the iconic Panathenaic Stadium, and revealed a manifesto for a body that enjoys liberty of movement, performing without constraint. The collection is a rediscovery of civilization’s roots, a desire to recompose as a fragmentation to understand the world. Of particular note, Maria Grazia Chiuri was inspired by Giorgio De Chirico, a pioneer of surrealism who drew on poignant memories of Greece to paint metaphysical places frozen in the silent contrast of light and shadow.
She then explored the universe of Alexander Iolas, a cosmopolitan gallery owner who preserved his close ties to Greece and his home in Athens, assembling an incredible collection of vases decorated with the intertwined bodies of wrestlers. Giant close-ups of those silhouettes stand out in the sketches by artist Pietro Ruffo, camouflaged on a selection of sportwear pieces, a synthesis of technical and formal research, the backbone and manifesto of a body performing beyond gender boundaries.
A series of white suits, jackets and pants, like those worn by Marlene Dietrich, created a sartorial lexicon poised between classicism and freedom. The oversized houndstooth is Hellenized, while cannage reveals new abstractions. Furthermore, there were touches of gold-meets-white, a hood grafted onto different looks like a punctuation mark, and an engraved inscription in Greek blue that became both a signature and an homage.