The Lady Dior bag has been a pillar of the French luxury fashion house since its 1995 debut. It’s a testament to Dior’s petites mains virtuoso craftsmanship and savoir faire, but also anachronistic design. It seems completely modern and retro at the same time, and it wouldn’t be surprising if it was developed in 1953 or 2023. There is a hard-to-pin-down otherness to it. It even encompasses a broad age range for the style of carrier, evoking both a girlish and mature aura.
Each season, creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri and her team push the bag’s color and design codes for a continual refresh. These changes are pushed to the stratosphere for Dior Lady Art #7, where a slew of artists were given carte blanche to completely remake the timeless icon. The limited-edition, artist-designed series of purses went on sale earlier this week.
This season, 11 artists—who include Ghada Amer, Sara Cwynar, Alex Gardner, Shara Hughes, Dorothy Iannone, Minjung Kim, Bouthayna Al Muftah, and Françoise Pétrovitch—were tapped to use the Lady Dior as a jump-off to fulfill their creative vision.
Here is a look at some of our favorite collaborations from artists whose work is definitely worth checking out.
Full moon fever inspired the Chinese artist Wang Yuyang. He came up with five different bags that riff on earth’s very own natural orbiting satellite. He melds traditional techniques with cutting-edge processes. One of his out-of-this-world bags pairs iridescent leather with a photo realist print of the moon.
Brian Calvin also envisioned the bags as an extension of his art practice (although translating his painting was a difficult task). “It’s completely outside of my skillset,” the artist said of his maximalist designs. He rendered the bags in azure, the perfect blue sky backdrop to frame his female figures. He then wielded threads, beads, and sequins for an expansive textural journey. The interior is a graphic pop of pink material, a gorgeous clash to the blue.
Zhenya Machneva is making a name for herself with her impressive tapestries that blur modern facets of life into an ancient art form. She even finds the beauty in a foreboding factory, rendering it in textile.
She took a surprising sculptural turn with her Lady Dior bags; one comes with a removable pedestal of resin needles that the bag stately stands atop.