Kim Jones’s newest Dior collaboration featured the artist Peter Doig, whose paintings graced an autumn/winter 2021 men’s collection rooted in ceremony. Here, Vogue’s fashion critic Anders Christian Madsen brings you five things to know about Dior’s autumn/winter 2021 menswear collection.
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The collection was inspired by ceremonial uniforms
If you happened to come across one of the cavalry’s frequent dress rehearsals on a lockdown walk through Hyde Park, you’d have been reminded of the feeling such uniforms inspire in us. For all its pomp and circumstance, ceremonious dress—like the stuff Kim Jones put on his digital Dior runway a year into the pandemic—has an ultimately reassuring effect: tradition, routine, and authority. “The idea was to go the opposite way [to how] we are living at the moment,” Jones said.
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It was very haute couture
Princely uniforms may not feel like the most germane garments to our new culture of comfort-wear and all-day pyjamas, but Jones’s regalia—more Cocteau than combat—served as a reminder that some senses of order persist, even in times of crisis. Embellished with embroideries inspired by the décor of the Académie des Beaux-Arts, the uniforms were nestled in the haute couture genetics of Dior, drawing a firm line between the history of Jones’s current house and his debut as couturier at Fendi next week.
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It featured a collaboration with Peter Doig
True to Jones’s methodology, which covers his silhouettes in the works of a different artist each season, the designer called upon Peter Doig to collaborate on the collection. One of the most praised and successful living artists in the world, the Scottish-born and Trinidad-based artist’s abstracted landscape paintings were sprawled over opera coats, anoraks and shirts, adding a painterly layer to the little drummer boy uniforms underneath them, which were ultimately quite fairytale.
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Jones said he relates to Doig’s autobiographical approach
“The idea of uniform and ceremony originally came in from Peter’s work, and from looking at French ceremonial dress, and the idea of making it into slightly more pop colour to match Peter’s paintings,” Jones said. “For me, Peter’s work is completely autobiographical, and I think that’s really amazing. I relate to his world in quite a lot of different ways. That’s what appealed to me. Peter is one of the most highly acclaimed artists of his whole generation, and I think it’s the beauty of the world that I want to express.”
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Prince Nikolai returned to the Dior runway
For Prince Nikolai of Denmark, who walked the show as he has done since Jones’s first Dior collection, the ceremony will have been familiar territory. The blue and red Danish Hussars, who accompany his grandmother the Queen, literally look like something out of a Disney film. If a fairytale was forming, Jones interrupted it an industrial set conceived as an art installation created by Doig: imposing chrome-like sculptures, they resembled massive sound systems, nodding at another contrast to our current lives at home.
This article was originally published on British Vogue