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DIOR MEN'S SUMMER_2025

Dior Men’s Summer 2025 Collection Show Features Surreal Sculptures by Hylton Nel

Within a transformative set design embellished with the surreal sculptures of South African ceramicist Hylton Nel, Artistic Director Kim Jones journeyed through the dualities of texture, tone, and pattern, presenting a vivacious take on heritage, opulence, and persistence for Dior.

During Paris Fashion Week, Dior unveiled a rapturous men’s summer 2025 collection embracing the enduring beauty of craft and the maison’s collective savoir-faire. 

Within a transformative set design embellished with the surreal sculptures of South African ceramicist Hylton Nel, the house’s skillful and contemplative Artistic Director Kim Jones journeyed through the dualities and eccentricities of texture, tone, and pattern, presenting a new take on heritage, opulence, and persistence for Dior. 

DIOR MEN'S SUMMER_2025 Finale by Adrien Dirand, courtesy of Dior.

The Parallel Paths of Christian Dior, Hylton Nel, and Kim Jones are Revealed in Paris

In this collection, I wanted to concentrate on elements of craft, the skills of the ateliers and artisans who work for the house: this is the lifeblood of Dior,” said Jones. 

“There is always a sense of biography when it comes to the house, that of Christian Dior and the succession of designers, here combined with the life of the ceramist Hylton Nel. This collection is a celebration of work and an expression of who somebody is and what they achieve through work, that legacy and continuity through time,” said Jones.

DIOR MEN'S SUMMER_2025 Scenography by Adrien Dirand, courtesy of Dior.

“I wanted to concentrate on elements of craft, the skills of the ateliers and artisans who work for the house: this is the lifeblood of Dior,”

— Kim Jones

“In the case of Christian Dior, Hylton Nel and myself, it’s an idea of parallel paths with different stories. It’s life-long work in ceramics and painting and life-long work in fabrications and clothing. There is an idea of and dedication to art and the applied arts shared by all,” said Jones. 

DIOR MEN'S SUMMER_2025 Courtesy of Dior.

Saint Laurent Inspirations Unite with Artistic and Organic Details

In this vein, the latest garments were both artistic and functional in their unique forms and motifs, with pleasingly curvaceous shapes and archival haute couture details. 

An unseen Saint Laurent sketch for a coat of the 1958 autumn winter collection came to miraculous life and paved the way for additional tailored gems. And the charming scarf collar cascaded throughout the collection, derived from Saint Laurent’s negatif of the autumn winter 1960 show. 

Serene moments of knitwear, with idyllic, homespun patterns, were collaged with prints and ceramic fastenings inspired by Mother Nature’s delicate wonders—and ultimately energized by the sky-high imagination of Nel. 

DIOR MEN'S SUMMER_2025 Courtesy of Dior.

Lush Clogs, the Revisioned Saddle Bag, and Handcrafted Hats Abound

Accessories were their own movable works of art, full of merriment and realism. An ode to the classic clog, an emblem of both work and play, shined with handcrafted details in lush calf leather or beech wood. As snappy derbies or garnished biker boots, rubber soles placed relief and support at center, with Nel’s artistry blooming into studded embroideries across the collection. 

The Saddle bag rejoiced in 25 years of dexterity and iconism, here revealed with new delicate and sculptural features. Canvas met raffia and leather for refreshing dynamism, while enchanting Cloche hats brought the romantic craft narrative full circle. Deftly designed by Stephen Jones alongside the Cape Town-based Earth Age, local artisans reveal here their magnificent skills in hand crocheting. In a meaningful joint effort, the hat’s ceramic beads were applied with care in Paris, fusing a world of effort, expertise, and heart. 

DIOR MEN'S SUMMER_2025 Courtesy of Dior.

Who is Hylton Nel?

Hylton Nel is a conceptual artist. Perhaps not in the way contemporary art uses the phrase but in the sense that he is an artist who is interested in ideas. The ideas and debates that capture his imagination are idiosyncratic and touch on many spheres, ranging from the history of the decorative arts to literature, visual art and issues in our politicised world. 

Often the references may not be immediately apparent, especially if the debate on that day was about a particular blue glaze and its meaning in Chinese ceramics, the significance of pattern-and-design motifs on Islamic tiles, the symbolism and form of cats in Egyptian art, the stances in erotic painting on ancient Greek vases, the resonances of Buddhist sculpture or the expression on the face of an African figure, to mention but a few possibilities. 

For Nel the medium of clay is a means to give his ideas form. The actual making of the form is seldom a challenge; his concern always remains with the idea or impulse that prompted him to realise the form. Over the course of more than 50 years working with clay and glazes, he has invented a visual language that is distinctly his own. 

He lives on the outskirts of Calitzdorp, a small town in the Klein Karoo. — via Hylton Nel

DIOR MEN'S SUMMER_2025 Courtesy of Dior.

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