Art media

The feminist art of Mariella Bettineschi at the Dior Fall/Winter 2022 show

The feminist works of Mariella Bettineschi survey the guests of the Dior F/W 2022 show

As guests gathered at Dior’s A/W 2022 womenswear show in Paris, duplicate pairs of eyes gazed at them from works by Mariella Bettineschi

It wasn’t just red-lined walls that lined Dior’s A/W 2022 show in Paris, but duplicate pairs of eyes. Female Artistic Director Maria Grazia Chiuri often calls on a female artist to exhibit her exploration of feminism, from Judy Chicago to Anna Paparatti, Claire Fontaine to Lucia Marcucci, and for A/W 2022 she collaborated with Italian artist Mariella Bettineschi. His works take canonical female portraits from the 16th to 19th centuries – such as Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl Earring from 1665 – and reimagine them with their surreal cut-out and duplicated eyes. As guests gathered in pews, those eyes watched each seated.

Bettineschi, born in 1948, uses the woman’s eye as a poignant socio-political feminist symbol, emphasizing the moral judgment that conditions women’s actions. On the Dior A/W 2022 show, gilded frames showcased Bettineschi’s works, tessellated around the walls of the exhibition space – which resembled a traditional art gallery or the walls of a lavish private residence – with multiple pairs of eyes. This setup added a triple layer of symbolism as the house’s female models marched, interviewed by women on the walls, a live physical audience and digital viewers, watching the show via the live stream or via scrolling social media.

Dior A/W 2022: investigation into the decor of the Mariella Bettineschi show

Facade of the Dior A/W 2022 fashion show in Paris

The pieces in the collection nodded to Bettineschi’s work – with the phrase “The Next Era”, a reference to the name of the artist’s monograph – sporting the sleeves of motocross gloves and motorcycle jackets. biker, the tongues of fierce boots and on sporty tank tops. As if to protect themselves from the gaze of society, the models sported tough leathers, padded corsets centered on American football and coveralls.

For Chiuri, “The Next Era” is free from misogyny. Dior’s A/W 2022 show set – an ongoing collaboration with a most feminist socio-political female artist – was another symbolic step in the right direction. §