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After Paris fashion week frenzy, your Instagram feed is probably still full of posts and stories about spectacular settings, over-the-top makeup looks, and streetstyle snapshots of influencers, celebrities and business insiders. Among them, there’s one you remember for sure: Dior. For the Spring/Summer 2020 collection, Maria Grazia Chiuri drew inspiration from Monsieur Dior’s sister, Catherine, who after surviving a concentration camp became a gardener and botanist. In addition to the beautifully rich details in the clothes – translated into embroideries, the materials and fabrics, and colour palette –, the stage was a diverse forest created in collaboration with design collective Coloco.

This collection, in addition to an homage to Catherine Dior – the original Miss Dior –, is as well an ode to celebrating, respecting and taking care of nature. Even though Maria Grazia had been working on it for months, the collection’s relevance and connection to the current zeitgeist was even more apparent when Greta Thunberg delivered her emotional, powerful and viral speech at the UN Climate Change Summit just three days earlier. As the world is finally realizing, we must take care of our planet because there is no planet B. And since fashion is inextricably connected to current issues, it must answer accordingly – as Chiuri proves.

In this video, we see part of Maria Grazia’s extensive research to create the collection, for which she visited the Museum of Natural History in Paris. She went to the prestigious institution to know more about plants, herbs, trees and flowers, all of which later informed the gorgeous dresses, blouses and shirts, pants, trench coats and skirts of the Spring/Summer 2020 collection, characterized by a general eerie and vaporous vibe – which contrasted with more tailored pieces like blazers and suits, also characteristic to the maison’s heritage.

“We have eight million specimens. Every year we get some more because it’s very important for us to keep on documenting not only the new species that are discovered and described every year but also the way that the flora is evolving”, explains Marc Jeanson, the botanist and Director of the Grand Herbier at the Museum of Natural History, to Dior’s Creative Director. This specific quote is also something that Chiuri can apply to her own work – “we have the same archives!”, she says at the beginning of the clip. As in addition to counting with the precious and invaluable archive of the Dior’s house – which could be paralleled to the endless archive of the museum –, she can also check how Dior’s signature silhouettes and pieces, like the bar jacket, for example, have evolved since the 1950s to present day.

Arnau Salvadó

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