Inspired By The Mandalorian And The 80s, Kim Jones and Dior Takes Us On An Acid Trip To A Galaxy Far, Far Away

How do you say Dior? Ooh la la la la.

Successfully striding through another season with ease, Kim Jones continues to expand his universe of multiple disciplines at Dior. And where it counts, it was hella fun.

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One would assume that after seeing the presentation of Dior’s fall imagination come to life, the first instinct would be to revisit the Big Bang Theory. Sure, it makes sense, because from an oddly non-threatening void of black scattered with a constellation of heavenly bodies, a swelling fire-like orb burst into a smear of light and colors that brought to life what once a vacuous space. As if you know, visualizing what now stands to be the most widely accepted and permissible explanation to how the observable universe began from a “primeval atom” and into the swirls of galaxies as we know it today. However, the knee-jerk reaction was to look up Paula Abdul’s seminal classic music video, Opposites Attract, in which she slinked, sauntered, and sizzled with the animated hot stuff, MC Skat Kat.

“Here kitty, kitty, kitty…” a disembodied voice taunts following a trailing purr of “Dior,” which was a sultry signal (orchestrated by Honey Dijon in a Dior and Lady Miss Kier-reworked remix of Deee-Lite’s Pussycat Meow and What Is Love) to this chapter’s in the beginning. From the depths of the shadows emerged the first look and the techno-inspired chant that soundtracked the show starts to make sense with a model walking in a robe-passing trench coat cinched at the waist, which was worn with a loose pair of printed cropped trousers, printed mules, and wait for it, braided space buns that mimic, well, cat ears. This feline motif is not taken anymore literally than it already is, but it does show up with a cartoon feline pouncing on a thickly textured shirt and more pussycat toppers throughout the collection. But just like the aforementioned 1989 clash of mediums, the overarching energy of the collection by Dior Men’s Artistic Director, Kim Jones, was fun and fantastic in a hyper colored and hyper realistic way.

Continuing his commitment to blur the lines of tradition and innovation, as well as of a new practice of collaborating with contemporary art figures from around the world such as Hajime Soroyama for pre-fall 2019, Daniel Arsham for spring/summer 2020, and Amoako Boafo for spring/summer 2021, Kim Jones enlisted the help of Kenny Scharf to splash the hallmark tailoring of Dior with pulsating vibrancy that can be easily likened to the eye-popping visual excess and delightful nonsense of the 80s. Against the stunning backdrop of Thomas Vanz, the 45-piece collection was a sight to behold at every turn. Despite it being reminiscent of an acid trip in swirls of neon, it wasn’t at all an overwhelming experience that often numbs an audience with the presumption of art. While there were a lot of punched up bright colors and tapestry of optical prints, there existed a grounding scheme of neutrals such as gray, white, and a whole lot of brown.

With the troops parading in the intergalactic fascination of Kim Jones, there was a conscious striking of a perfect balance between out-of-this-world and reality, with the playful precision of sartorial suiting that have become a Kim Jones signature taking on a liberating exhale in ease of silhouettes, the layering becoming more languid, and the outerwear seemingly taken out of the wardrobe of The Mandalorian with its almost ovoid patched bombers and oversized pockets in surprising surplus. To offset the leaning toward the space age, this season of Dior saw a softening of the looks with decorations of tassels, corsages, and even delicate embroidery. There were still nods to the favored hardware-inspired accessories, but this time, they were downsized to thinner carabineers, and of course, no new Dior show is complete without the magical jewelry work of Yoon Ahn. This time around a lot of jade and lapis were thrown in the mix, which manifested itself in auspicious amounts around the neck, on the ears, and on the wrists.

There is nothing thoroughly groundbreaking in the bags and footwear department, although it will most still stand to be hot ticket items for the brand, such as the Oblique-featured slip-ons, laced trekking boots, and plimsoll-like high cut sneakers. Meanwhile, the Dior bags continue to stand out when it should, such as in an oversized and a graffiti-ed Saddle bag, a crossbody strap bag, and a miniature boxy messenger bag.

In the continuing conversation of evolution in the ideology of Dior, one that intends to thread dichotomies into a singular stitch, Kim Jones easily and successfully strides through another season despite the obvious limits and necessary rationalizing. It isn’t a stretch by any means necessary as he continues to expand his universe of high fashion, art, and streetwear, but when and where it counts, even for just the time being, he took us for a trip to a galaxy far, far away—and boy was it fun.

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