Photo © Valentin Hennequin
Christian Dior loved dance. Maria Grazia Chiuri has also always cultivated a passion for this discipline, in all its forms. Dance and fashion are two living arts that sculpt bodies and show us how to appropriate our own. It is in this area of fascinating research that, after the ballet Nuit Blanche, the collaboration initiated with Eleonora Abbagnato1 continues with the film Nuit Romaine, the fruit of synergies between the French Embassy in Italy, the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma and the House of Dior.
Nuit Romaine, a film directed by Angelin Preljocaj, is set in the heart of the Palazzo Farnese, headquarters of the French Embassy in Italy, one of the most beautiful palaces in Rome, a city dear to the Creative Director of Dior’s women’s collections, of Roman origin. Nox, goddess of the night – embodied by Abbagnato, accompanied by star dancer Friedemann Vogel – enters the palace and, as she moves along corridors, through rooms and gardens, encounters various individuals: popes, dukes, noblewomen and other characters who lived in this legendary place over the centuries.
In a succession of tableaux highlighting the ballet, conceived by Angelin Preljocaj, the dancers of the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma interact with the goddess. Essential sources of inspiration for the choreographer Preljocaj, each of the spaces is transformed into a narrative showcase allowing the multiple talents of this creation to be expressed.
The fusion of virtuoso skills of the Dior ateliers and those of the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, guided by Maria Grazia Chiuri, played a fundamental role in the design of the costumes. Draping and pleating executed by hand reveal more than ever their delicacy on capes and dresses. Other examples of savoir-faire specific to the vocabulary of the House and the Creative Director include lace inlays, myriads of beads and color gradations creating spectacular effects. Hand-painted costumes, designed as trompe-l’oeil, are decorated with the characters that feature in the Carracci frescoes2 on the vault of the Farnese Gallery. Like a foray of the modern world into the heart of this journey through time, ensembles of jeans, t-shirts and sneakers also make an appearance. Clothing thus becomes a language in itself, linking past, present and future, and translating the cultural conversations between France and Italy, symbolizing their precious alchemy.
The French Embassy in Italy is committed to fostering Franco-Italian artistic creation by encouraging innovative projects, notably during the renovation of the Palazzo, where it hatched an “open for work3” concept, breathing a contemporary spirit into this magnificent, emblem of the Renaissance.
This dreamlike film will be broadcast on April 29, International Dance Day, on Dior’s YouTube channel and social networks.
1 Ballet Director of the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma and star of the Opéra national de Paris.
2 At the end of the 16th century, brothers Annibale and Agostino Carracci, both painters, executed the imposing frescoes in the heart of the gallery of the Farnese Palace. A technical feat that required many years of work.
3 During the restoration work, the Farnese Palace became a blank canvas for numerous artists who sublimated it with their inventiveness.