- Text Kinza Shenn
- Photography Morgan O’Donovan
- 9th March 2021
Through the looking glass
“It’s night, and something is stirring at the Palace of Versailles,” starts Dior’s fairytale. Maria Grazia Chiuri was inspired for FW21 by the genre’s French origins in the 17th century, and the female writers whose protofeminist perspectives presented complex, nuanced, and subversive expressions of their sex.
Posing questions of identity, self-reflection and transgressing threshold, mirrors served symbolically in the cinematic presentation. The runway itself was staged in the palace’s 70 metre-long Galerie de Glace, where artist Silvia Giambrone built an installation of thorn-impaled wax mirrors titled The Hall of Shadows. Agitated and somewhat sinister, choreographer Sharon Eyal created a modern balletic performance that expanded on these themes.
Homages were paid explicitly to old favourite tales, too. Little Red Riding Hood’s namesake accessory and the Beast’s enchanted rose were defining motifs. Alice made an appearance – a little more subdued and tenebrous in a leather-clad aproned dress, hairband and eyeliner than her Disney-fied self. Shadow Alice, if you will. This was ultimately the collection’s mood. Sombre and beautiful, Dior offered elaborations on reality through the looking glass.