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Dior Couture S/S 2004

Art / Architecture / Design / Fashion

Imagine one’s self outfitted in couture, cruising down the Nile alongside King Tut – Egypt’s the most famous pharaoh – who ruled the 18th dynasty thousands of years ago during a period of Egyptian history known as the ‘New Kingdom’. This opulent, seemingly preposterous visual becomes all the more conceivable when expressed through the ethereal mind of John Galliano.


Posted January 20th, 2019 By Colby Mugrabi

The designer’s spring/summer 2004 couture collection for the house of Christian Dior sought inspiration from ancient Egypt, modernizing age-old cultural references into a dazzling spectacle of excess. What began for Galliano with an aerial tour of Cairo and Luxor, evolved into a collection rich with cross-cultural inspiration; from the exaggerated poses of ancient Egyptian figurines, to 1950’s fashion photographs by Richard Avedon and Irving Penn.

Supermodel Erin O’ Connor opened the show outfitted as Cleopatra, complete with a Nefertiti hat and sphinx eye makeup, while Reptile-like scaled leather looks in hues of gold and bright blue were paired with egg-sized scarab earrings. Hieroglyphs and tomb paintings were called upon as decorative elements on the collection’s extreme eveningwear, while models mimicked mummies in black and white, gem-encrusted silk gowns, accessorized with complimentary head wraps. The season’s bedazzling visual contrasts extended beyond the collection’s coupling of ancient and modern references, as Galliano paired geometric shapes cut from golden mirrors, with airy tulle gowns, and corseted, structured breastplates with billowing tiers of organza. In collaboration with London-based milliner Stephen Jones, King Tut-inspired metallic masks and elaborately feathered headdresses further enhanced each look, as Galliano’s Queens of the Nile strutted down the runway to a soundtrack that fittingly featured the Bangle’s 1980s hit, “Walk Like an Egyptian.”

The beauty of both Galliano the ‘showman’ and Galliano the ‘designer’ is defined by his ability to references the means of Christian Dior’s legacy while creating his own definition of couture, one that is theatrical and dramatic, blurring the lines between costume design and high fashion. Whether the collection is practical or wearable is up for debate, but one thing is without question – John Galliano knows how to put on a show.

Dior ctr ss 2004 muse board
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References

Barry Lategan

Vogue Italia, March 1970

Barry lategan for vogue italia  march 1970

Irving Penn

Sue Murray wearing a Balenciaga evening dress and wrap, Vogue, September 1967

Irving penn  sue murray wearing a balenciaga evening dress and wrap  vogue  september  1967

James Lee Byars

The Death of James Lee Byars, 1982-1994

James lee byars  the death of james lee byars  1982 1994

Maxime Du Camp

Travel Photograph, 1800s

Maxime du camp  travel photograph  1800s

Egyptian Bright Blue Faience Ushabti of Psamtik

God's Father, born to Seba-rekhyet, 570-526 B.C

An egyptian bright blue faience ushabti of psamtik  god s father  born to seba rekhyet  570 526 b.c

The Gold Pyramid House

1977, Wadsworth, IL

The gold pyramid house  1977  wadsworth  il

Leila Madame

Ae4edd26e9990f09c733b328ea21cc24  leila madame

Ancient Egyptian Furniture Footstool

841 02717845en masterfile

Andy Warhol and Candy Darling

Early 1970s

Andy warhol and candy darling  early 1970s

Collar of Neferuptah

1800s BC

Collar of neferuptah  1800s bc

Dora Kallmus

Fashion Model, 1927

Dora kallmus  fashion model  1927

Coffin for Tutankhamun's Viscera

Coffin for tutankhamun s viscera

Richard Avedon

Dovima in Balenciaga, Harper's Bazaar, 1950

Richard avedon  dovima in balenciaga  harper s bazaar  1950

Empire Period Armchairs

1812

Empire period armchairs  1812

Etienne de Beaumont

Etienne de beaumont

Figure of Aha Bes

Figure of aha bes

Frank Gehry

Fish Sculpture Designed for the 1992 Barcelona Olympics

Frank gehry  fish sculpture designed for the 1992 barcelona olympics

Fulvio Bianconi for Venini

Vase 'Fasce Orizzontali,' 1950

Fulvio bianconi for venini  vase  fasce orizzontali   1950

Penny Slinger

Mountain of Mysteries, 1976-1977

Penny slinger  mountain of mysteries  1976 1977

Ancient Egyptian Small Gold Perfume Box

Small gold perfume box  egyptian

Tutankhamun

Inlaid pectoral, scarab beetle with Isis and Nephthys

Tutankhamun. inlaid pectoral  scarab beetle with isis and nephthys

Tuyu's Box With Vaulted Lid

Tuyu s box with vaulted lid
References
Barry lategan for vogue italia  march 1970

Barry Lategan

Vogue Italia, March 1970

1 of 22

Irving penn  sue murray wearing a balenciaga evening dress and wrap  vogue  september  1967

Irving Penn

Sue Murray wearing a Balenciaga evening dress and wrap, Vogue, September 1967

2 of 22

James lee byars  the death of james lee byars  1982 1994

James Lee Byars

The Death of James Lee Byars, 1982-1994

3 of 22

Maxime du camp  travel photograph  1800s

Maxime Du Camp

Travel Photograph, 1800s

4 of 22

An egyptian bright blue faience ushabti of psamtik  god s father  born to seba rekhyet  570 526 b.c

Egyptian Bright Blue Faience Ushabti of Psamtik

God's Father, born to Seba-rekhyet, 570-526 B.C

5 of 22

The gold pyramid house  1977  wadsworth  il

The Gold Pyramid House

1977, Wadsworth, IL

6 of 22

Ae4edd26e9990f09c733b328ea21cc24  leila madame

Leila Madame

7 of 22

841 02717845en masterfile

Ancient Egyptian Furniture Footstool

8 of 22

Andy warhol and candy darling  early 1970s

Andy Warhol and Candy Darling

Early 1970s

9 of 22

Collar of neferuptah  1800s bc

Collar of Neferuptah

1800s BC

10 of 22

Dora kallmus  fashion model  1927

Dora Kallmus

Fashion Model, 1927

11 of 22

Coffin for tutankhamun s viscera

Coffin for Tutankhamun's Viscera

12 of 22

Richard avedon  dovima in balenciaga  harper s bazaar  1950

Richard Avedon

Dovima in Balenciaga, Harper's Bazaar, 1950

13 of 22

Empire period armchairs  1812

Empire Period Armchairs

1812

14 of 22

Etienne de beaumont

Etienne de Beaumont

15 of 22

Figure of aha bes

Figure of Aha Bes

16 of 22

Frank gehry  fish sculpture designed for the 1992 barcelona olympics

Frank Gehry

Fish Sculpture Designed for the 1992 Barcelona Olympics

17 of 22

Fulvio bianconi for venini  vase  fasce orizzontali   1950

Fulvio Bianconi for Venini

Vase 'Fasce Orizzontali,' 1950

18 of 22

Penny slinger  mountain of mysteries  1976 1977

Penny Slinger

Mountain of Mysteries, 1976-1977

19 of 22

Small gold perfume box  egyptian

Ancient Egyptian Small Gold Perfume Box

20 of 22

Tutankhamun. inlaid pectoral  scarab beetle with isis and nephthys

Tutankhamun

Inlaid pectoral, scarab beetle with Isis and Nephthys

21 of 22

Tuyu s box with vaulted lid

Tuyu's Box With Vaulted Lid

22 of 22


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