“A mask tell us more than a face,” said Oscar Wilde, and Dior seems to agree. In embracing this idea, both literally and figuratively, they have given rise to Naumachia, a gala we all wish we could have attended. Haute Couture and historical preservation came together in a collaboration with the Venetian Heritage Foundation, bringing forth a spectacular charity gala that benefits the restoration of the Italian city’s treasured landmarks.
Coinciding with the 60th Venice Biennale, the gala was held on April 20th 2024 at the heart of the Arsenale Vecchio, a historic venue that once served as the city’s naval shipyard . This place is a key part of the larger Arsenale complex, which includes the Porta Magna – a primary focus of the event’s fundraising efforts. The gala sought to raise funds for the preservation and promotion of the Serenissima’s legacy, particularly the restoration of the aforementioned Arsenale’s Porta Magna and the Ca’ d’Oro museum.
The name Naumachia reflects the gala’s inspiration from historical naval re-enactments held in the Roman Empire and within Europe’s royal courts during the 17th and 18th centuries. It was a novel celebration of Dior’s longstanding fascination with arts and its steadfast commitment to fostering culture and creativity. Artistic performances and installations echoed within the walls of the Arsenale Vecchio, marking a true celebration of Venetian heritage.