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Chanakya School of Craft x Mickalene Thomas for Christian Dior


For the staging of the Dior Haute Couture spring-summer 2023 show, Maria Grazia Chiuri has woven a new creative dialogue with Mickalene Thomas, a legendary African-American artist.Envisioned specifically for this Dior show, her decor epitomizes a new pantheon of women, born out of a conversation dedicated to the importance of black and mixed-race female figures who have become exemplary by choosing to think and act differently.

Mickalene Thomas’ work explores themes of celebrity, femininity, and power, challenging the male gaze while questioning the predominant canons of art history. She expresses herself through painting and devises collages by mixing printed images, photographs and other material elements, often using iconographies of renowned artists, in order to contest social norms and ideals of feminine beauty over the centuries.

Giant portraits of a series of exceptional public figures – elaborated with embroidery conceived by the Chanakya Ateliers and Chanakya School of Craft on a printed textile base take over the show’ s setting. They are a heterogeneous, eclectic group – a source of inspiration on all continents – who have queried the status quo and achieved incredible feats.

For the Dior spring-summer 2023 haute couture défilé, our Chanakya ateliers and the Chanakya School of Craft embroidered with sequins and diamante the giant portraits of outstanding female figures that occupy the show’s decor. At the convergence of contemporary art and couture, the scintillating ornamentation creates an entrancing interplay of texture and light.