Maria Grazia's Spirited, Youthful, Feminist Vision For Dior SS18 In Paris

'This is not your mother's Dior'

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'Fashion on one hand is a beautiful dress but if you don't give a message, it's just a beautiful dress,' Maria Grazia said in a recent interview for ELLE.

We were talking about her willingness to go there, directly addressing feminism in her work through her empowering slogan-bearing t-shirts and interviews. And a year into her time as Dior's first woman artistic director, she's proving to be committed to the task.

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Her third ready to wear collection doubled down on her feminist leanings, opening the show with a double denim look emblazoned with the words, 'Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?' which is also the title of an essay written by the American art historian, Linda Nochlin.

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The article was written in 1971, a time when feminist discourse was at its peak. And while a lot has obviously changed (for example, many a great woman artist have made their mark on history), the fight for women's equality in many areas largely remains the same.

The strong statement made for a heady counterbalance to her otherwise light and youthful clothes. Feminism in a pink and black striped bodysuit and floaty (dare I say, girly?) sheer tulle skirt? Why not?

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Maria Grazia has talked in the past about how her 21-year-old daughter, Rachele Reggini, has influenced her work. And that millennial sensibility featured majorly here.

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Though this season, she was inspired by images of the French-American painter Niki de Saint Phalle (a woman who had a relationship with the house during its period under creative director Marc Bohan) at a time in her life when Niki embodied 'the beauty of her time, more adolescent than androgynous, small and fiery,' according to the press notes.

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The reference made for her most young-spirited collection to date complete with little mini dresses, functional jumpsuits, sheer skirts worn open at the front and a series of fantastic mesh, lace-up boots.

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In short, this isn't your mother's Dior.

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