Dior Resort Collection 2018

Maria Grazia Chiuri introduces her queens of the desert


Maria Grazia Chiuri introduced feminist ideology to Dior with loud and proud slogans for SS17 inspired by Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. T-shirts emblazoned with the words 'We Should All Be Feminists' tell it how it is.

The creative director's very first resort collection held at the Santa Monica Mountains Nature Preserve yesterday may have been less of a political call to arms but it was no less loaded with meaning. Inspired by the primitive art of the Lascaux cave – discovered in 1940 and a great source of inspiration to Monsieur Dior who created prints inspired by its ancient drawings for his 1951 Ovale range – Grazia Chiuri's collection was anthropology of a different kind: earthy, natural and spiritual. There is nonetheless a unifying sensibility at work here: Grazia Chiuri's pursuit of femininity and truth laid bare is already becoming something of a trademark, be it through arresting pro-feminist slogans, or via folklorish animal motifs, as seen on cinched coats and floaty feminine dresses here.

So, in this dusty desert atmosphere, peppered with the usual coterie of A list celebrities – Rihanna, Charlize Theron, Miranda Kerr – the models roamed the Dior tents like free spirits, kitted out in Western-inspired outfits in tones to match the arid landscape - rust, ochre and tan, as well as pops of cactus flower red - tassels aplenty and flat-brim hats by Stephen Jones, worn like audacious cowgirls (see Raquel Welch in Hannie Caulder).

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The designer is said to have been inspired by author Clarissa Pinkola Estés and her book Women Who Run With The Wolves for this debut Resort collection which was indeed a celebration of female empowerment as a natural and vital force to be reckoned with. Who knows what Maria Grazia Chiuri will come up with next? Whatever is in store, it's bound to compound her new directive which is very much anchored in deeper questions about female identity and matriarchal potency through history.

Hats off to her. Or as they say in France, 'Chapeau!'.

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