Time.news – The book as a dream, creative source and expression of freedom. Books that also nourish fashion collections and become fashionable. The ‘Più Libri Più Liberi’ Fair in Rome couldn’t bring a more authoritative voice on stage to say it: that of Maria Grazia Chiurithe first female creative director of the historic Maison founded in 1946 by Christian Diorsince 2016 ‘our’ Italian on the throne of France.
“I grew up in the 70s and for me fashion was always a way to rebel against my mother who wanted me dressed as a Tyrolean. I have always experienced fashion as a form of freedom: I decide for myself, who I want to be and how I want to be”. Chiuri is casual and confident as she remembers (eliciting a smile from the audience) her mother who tried to impose on her unlikely clothes while she wanted ripped jeans.
The books helped Chiuri fight stereotypes to reinterpret clothing by putting women and their feelings at the center: a new approach to femininity which quickly became a new declination of feminism that goes beyond the fashion system and speaks to young women. ‘today and to society. Not by chance the Dior brand is among the partners of the 22nd edition of this successful event: 670 events in four days, all regularly sold-out, over 115 thousand visitors and, last but not least, strong growth in sales for publishers.
These are absolute record numbers, he was keen to underline Innocenzo Cipolletta, president of the Italian Publishers Association. She was among the VIPs, in the front row, also during the highly acclaimed meeting-confrontation “Italians in Paris”, which put the spotlight on two leading Italian women beyond the Alps: with Maria Grazia Chiuri and the curator of the fair, Chiara Valerio, Teresa Cremisi , president of Adelphi, former director of two French publishing giants such as Gallimard and Flammarion.
Approached by Time.news, on the sidelines of the event, Maria Grazia Chiuri explained the meaning of an unexpected collaboration between the French Maison and small and medium-sized Italian publishing houses: “I love books very much and there is also a personal relationship with Chiara Valerio and therefore for me it was a pleasure to be able to combine this passion and this friendship in a project carried out in Rome of which I am very proud because it combines a creative aspect and cultural”. “For me, books are a fundamental tool for my creative work – she added – they allow me to imagine and dream… my presence here is to tell everyone ‘read’!
It is possible to trace the signs of the readings that have most marked her in all the fashion boards designed by Chiuri, she herself tells it while inviting people to abandon themselves to reading to find creativity and freedom through books. Then, making those present smile once again, he also admits that fashion can – upon closer inspection – be assimilated to books: there are those who wear a designer garment just to appear and those who buy books (never read) to display in the library of home, because it gives ‘status’.
‘We Should All Be Feminists’ is the motto of Maria Grazia Chiuri’s Spring-Summer 2017 collection. Discover more pic.twitter.com/VKAirdVI0F
— Dior (@Dior)
February 10, 2017
Is there a narrative in the world of fashion? According to Maria Grazia Chiuri there is more than one, starting from the one that portrays the stylist-artist as a solitary genius, closed in a room to create, while in large luxury companies it is the team work that rewards and makes a project win , together with the continuous comparison in the team that must carry it forward. “Unfortunately, fashion, she adds, has been poorly reported and still is today, because too often it is linked to the (commercial) idea of a brand.” An aspect that the new media have contributed to accentuating by overshadowing, in her opinion, “how much fashion is part of the cultural system”.
Thoughts immediately turn to her iconic “We Should All Be Feminists” t-shirt. A strong, disruptive message that inaugurated the Chiuri era of the French Maison in 2017. A Maison, she admits, that welcomed her and made her her own right from the start, effectively crowning her within its grandiose history and within a cultural system of which fashion, in France, is a full part. For this too, she says, “I feel like thanking Paris”.
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