Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos’s work set the stage for Dior’s 1950s-inspired looks on the second day of Paris Fashion Week, Reuters reported last week. She was commissioned by Dior creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri to create the immersive installation.
For the fall show, Chiuri looked to the fashion house’s archives, drawing inspiration from women such as Christian Dior’s sister Catherine and French singers Edith Piaf and Juliette Greco. Their styles were heavily influenced by Hollywood at the time, as well as a feeling of rebuilding following World War II.
Chiuri’s dark color palettes and styled prints on the runway were off-set by Vasconcelos’s kaleidoscopic hanging structure complete with tentacles and embellished with Dior’s knitted crochet, fabric, lace, fringes, sequins, and feathers.
The 79-foot-long, 23-foot-tall, 20-ton amorphous piece, resembling both a plant and an octopus, provided a moody and ominous backdrop to the temporary structure set up in the Jardin des Tuileries.
Reminiscent of a Surrealist painting, Vasconcelos described her work to Reuters as a “magical garden like another world, another dimension.” She added, “It’s quite unique for the contemporary art world to have this connection to the fashion world.”
This is Vasconcelos’s second collaboration with the fashion brand. In 2013, she created a large bow made of hundreds of Dior perfume bottles.