by Stephen Garner

Dior Men’s artistic director Kim Jones teamed up with Ghana-born artist Amoako Boafo for the French luxury brand’s spring/summer 2021 collection. Jones presented the collection via an online-exclusive video as part of the Paris Fashion Week online schedule.

Jones met Boafo initially in Miami at the Rubell Museum in 2019, and it was an artistic love at first sight. Boafo’s artwork, which reflects on his upbringing and Black culture at large, while challenging masculine stereotypes, is transposed onto garments illustrating the savoir-faire and history of haute couture.

Subtly streamlined and refined, the looks combine sportswear influences with the house’s exceptional tailoring, highlighting unexpected links between the painter and Dior’s heritage.

A two-part video revealing the Dior summer 2021 men’s collection features a conversation with Boafo, where he discusses how he became an artist and talks about the unique finger-painting method that he is known for. Interspersing the interview are periods of sound, edited and soundtracked by Chris Cunningham, which begins to showcase parts of the collection.

Models are decked in Dior’s latest garments, alongside some current pieces such as the Air Jordan 1 collaboration that has just released. Later in the video, Jones discusses why he wanted to work with an artist, and how the collection started: Jones was inspired by the ivy plant – a recurring Dior motif – after seeing it in one of Boafo’s paintings.

Act II of the video, directed by Jackie Nickerson, is presented much like a runway. In this, we see suits paired with cummerbunds, a standout shirt embellished with shimmering ivy leaves, belted androgynous outerwear, and lots of floral prints adorning shirts, tank tops and more. There’s a showcase of new footwear: a foray into must-have sandals, alongside military-inspired boots.

See the full video below.