Kimaya, the designer of the eponymous collection, and its creative director Karishma Swali have revealed a collaboration with Dior for the production of a series of huge textile artworks by renowned contemporary Indian artists Madhvi and Manu Parekh to be unveiled at the spring-summer 2022 Dior haute couture presentation in Paris.
The collaboration was born out of a years-long discussion between Swali and Dior's women's collections creative director, Maria Grazia Chiuri. “Maria Grazia has always been a true champion for craft excellence, fostering and preserving indigenous master skills from all over the world,” Swali added by email. “It was only natural that we connect and begin a discussion about Indian craftsmanship and techniques, as well as what role they may play in the future of fashion, given Dior's position as a meeting point between cultures.”
The artists will use hand-spun silk thread from Aslihan Textiles in Turkey, a family-run business run by Gulnihal Yilmaz, the only woman in the world weaving silk carpets on horizontal looms.
“You can think of it as a story between three women: Karishma at Chanakya Studio, Madhvi and myself with our techniques, and Gulnihal weaving for us,” Parekh said. “This all led to an incredible amount of mutual respect and comprehension, not just between Gulnihad and us but also with Karishma at Chanakya, Maria Grazia, and the Dior House. The whole process has been like living a dream, with its ups and downs.”The Parekhs are no strangers to prestigious commissions; their artworks, offered in limited editions, can be found in notable public spaces worldwide. Most notably is the complete set of 16 carpets installed at the new San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), adjacent to works by Mark Rothko and Jackson Pollock, as well as the first-ever large-scale textile installation at New York City’s High Line by Studio Job.