The first section of the exposition, placed in the main room of the building, presents the beginning of Dior’s creations, from the period in which Harper’s Bazaar gave them the name: New Look. Inspired by the idea of the “absolute woman”, the haute-couture pieces present the architectural vision over tailoring which characterizes all the creations of Christian Dior.
The section “Dance of time” begins with the influences of the 18th century fashion, with the sumptuous dresses “Palmyre” and “Armide” from the 50’s-60’s collections. The Belle Epoque is used as an inspiration for the gorgeous pieces, in the style of the optimistic period before the World War One. The Koh-I-Noor dress, named after the biggest diamond ever discovered is inspired by the grandiose balls of that time and is distinguished through the complicated decorations made out from golden beads and gemstones caught in an ensemble of tulle and lace. Vitoria de Castellane’s jewelry, which became iconic for Dior, completes the atmosphere: lush, excessive, rare, they remind us of the art-nouveau style because of the floral motifs and fluid forms.
J’Adore perfume, the most important in the history of Dior, is celebrated through two artistic multimedia installations. The first one, designed by Olga Kisseleva, is a “pipe organ” made of one hundred stylized perfume bottles and was created together with the chief perfumer of Dior, Francois Demachy. Every bottle of perfume contains an essence that, when is lit, diffuses a particular odor. Just like a symphonic pipe organ, the creation of the Russian artist combines the notes of different flavors to recreate the complete portative of the J’Adore perfume. In the same time, a video projecting system illuminates the glass containers to accentuate the idea that sits at the basis of the installation: the invisible becomes visible.
The Pharaohs, the Ancient Egypt, the sun and the gold are the defining elements of the second installation dedicated to J’Adore. The Egyptian sarcophagus owned by the museum is the central piece of a composition in which dozens of perfume bottles surround the immortal body of the pharaoh. The décor is completed by numerous Dior dresses inspired by the opulence of the North-African kingdom during its glory period.
The memorable exposition took place in 2011 and can also be visited online, by taking a virtual tour.