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Judy Chicago Dazed Christian Dior SS20 Haute Couture Paris
Judy ChicagoCourtesy of Dior

Judy Chicago on creating a Dior womb

The American artist discusses fighting back against phallic architecture and what the world would look like if it was ruled by women

Last week, 43 years after designing a mother goddess sculpture, American artist Judy Chicago was finally able to bring it to life, courtesy of her collaboration with Dior and Maria Grazia Chiuri. Tasked with designing the storied house’s latest showspace, Chicago opted to create a huge structure resembling a female body in the grounds of the Musée Rodin in Paris – a location which Chicago describes as a “paean to masculinity”.

Now, Dior releases a short film in which Chicago takes us through the process of creating her goddess, showing everything from the first sketch and mood board to the final result.

With the interior of the space intended to be evocative of a womb, the floor is lined with specially woven carpets and seats, while the ceilings are hung with twenty banners posing a series of questions as to what the world would look like if women ruled the world, with ‘Would earth be protected?’, ‘Would both men and women be gentle?’, and ‘Would there be equal parenting?’ anong them. The banners were fabricated by females in a school of embroidery supported by Dior in India, a country Chicago notes as having the mainly male embroiderers. 

Talking on one banner in particular, which says ‘If women ruled the world would buildings resemble wombs?’, Chicago explained that she was rallying against the underlying phallism prevalent in architecture around the world, stating: “Have you looked at the buildings all over? We’re so used to seeing phallic structures that people don’t even recognise what they are.” 

Elsewhere, the SS20 Couture collection itself channelled Ancient Greek and Roman royalty with a series of muted gold garments, including chiffon dresses on the line-up for the new season – with many looks completed with strapped sandals and gold snake headbands and belts.

Watch the video below and check out backstage images from the Couture collection in the gallery above.