A city made up of unending cultural influences – it’s considered the city with the most museums in the world – and near-constant transformation and change, Mexico City was the only appropriate destination for Maria Grazia Chiuri’s latest runway show for Dior. The artistic director took to the sights and sounds of her surroundings for inspiration, putting them in conversation with cultural elements of her home country, Italy, as well as the home of Dior, France. Setting the stage for the collection to come, a series of pre-show teasers saw Chiuri pay homage to these cross-cultural influences with visits to Rome’s Capitoline Museums and Naples’ Archaeological National Museum, followed by The Louvre in Paris and last but certainly not least, Mexico City’s very own Frida Kahlo Museum.
To this day, Kahlo remains a transformative figure in Mexican culture. Exploration of the human body is central to her art as well as the driving force behind this collection; moths and butterflies come to life in the form of jewellery and embroidered adornments, reflecting Kahlo’s penchant for self-transformation in her self-portraits. At 19 years old, Kahlo was already exploring gender nonconformity, wearing men’s three-piece suits and breaking the boundaries of what women were expected to wear at the time. Chiuri pays homage to that legacy here, the idea of claiming one’s bodily autonomy through fashion, that there are no boundaries to what one can become through the clothes one wears.
Chiuri approached this collection as a research project of sorts, studying Mexico’s various regions, embracing the different textile and sartorial traditions which have emerged throughout each region’s history to form the greater fabric which shapes the country’s rich cultural heritage – and wardrobe – today. Beyond the creative dialogue and cultural artefacts which informed the creation of Chiuri’s pieces, there’s also the matter of partnership; well-known for her efforts to collaborate with local artisans on all her collections, Chiuri worked closely with local weavers like Yolcentle and Sna Jolobil, along with social anthropologists and other dedicated craftsmen, to curate a full-fledged experience for guests of the Dior Cruise 2024 show.
Also a cornerstone of Chiuri’s collections is her desire to transform her runway shows into a performative space for female artists and feminist projections, and her trip to Mexico City was no different, as multidisciplinary artist Elina Chauvet was engaged to build a unique art installation especially for this event. (It’s somewhat of a plausible allusion to Kahlo’s own husband, the equally legendary Mexican painter Diego Rivera, whose murals are still mainstays in prominent cultural institutions throughout Mexico.) Against the backdrop of Chauvet’s work models marched unbothered through the rain, standing in solidarity for the finale in a fitting conclusion to Chiuri’s ambitions for this collection as well as bringing Dior’s decades of history full circle; the French luxury house previously showed several collections in the city, and one of founder Christian Dior’s very first dresses back in 1947 was aptly titled, ‘Mexico.’
Read ahead to see all the celebrities who made their way to Mexico City to witness the show, and all the looks from the Dior Cruise 2024 collection.
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