Christian Dior at Les Arts Decoratifs, Paris

Christian Dior, Couturier Du Rêve (Dream Couturier) is taking over Paris museum Les Arts decoratifs to celebrate Diors 70th anniversary. Expanded over 3000 square meters, the extensive exhibition features designs from the Christian Dior founder himself as well as the six designers who followed.

Opening the exhibition is a midi red dress with a shirt style bodice and a pleated skirt, reminding of us how Dior broke through post-war style with a feminine waist-cinching silhouette. We are taken through a room which can quite well be described as the story of Christian Dior, with photographs and letters of Dior’s younger years, before we are lead through to a miniature exhibition in itself of Diors architectural models and artworks from the designers days as an artist.

The exhibition really begins with photographs of Dior’s earlier work, simply framed in black and mounted on black walls. The classic photos begin to enchant you into Dior’s garments, drawing you into the elegant shapes, textures and details.

Garments in full scale and half scale, headware, jewellery, bags, shoes and illustrations of Dior’s work adorn the walls of a darkly lit corridor, inviting you to be bewitched by the designer’s work. Sorted by colour, the works harmonise gently together, demonstrating a beautiful rainbow wash of complexions. We also see Chistian Dior’s later work; beautiful gowns with an array of more modern prints, forms and textiles are displayed in a much more lightly lit room with cut out leaves hanging from the ceiling. It really is enchanting.

As we begin the second cycle of the exhibition across the hall, we are introduced to the later six designers who followed in Dior’s footsteps. This time, brightly coloured images of their work are mounted onto walls, as well as sketches accompanied with fabric swatches. There is a white room, adorned in white garments of a variation of shapes and silhouettes. With a mirror ceiling, the work of Dior covers all four walls top to bottom, forcing you to turn in a slow circle of admiration.

The final hall is a magical finish to Couturier Du Rêve, with a podium holding elaborate shimmering garments which glitter in the light. At the end of the hall is a platform with dresses made by Dior couturiers for an array of red carpet celebrities as well as Princess Diana, and we realise it’s safe to say that true to the exhibition title, the house of Dior really is a dream couturier.

“Christian Dior, Designer of Dreams” is on view from July 5, 2017, through January 7, 2018.” – Vogue.



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