On Thursday night in Tokyo, something impossible happened: Even with her newly pink hair, someone managed to outshine Bella Hadid. That someone wasn't Kate Moss, nor A$AP Rocky, Diplo, or Pusha T, who were all also in town for Dior Homme's pre-fall 2019 menswear show. They all found themselves facing the same superhuman competition—a towering, 39-foot-tall fembot constructed by the Japanese artist Hajime Sorayama, who was in fact the only "woman" to appear on the runway that night.
Christian Dior, it seems, would have approved: He was fascinated with Japan, to the point that the house actually had its first couture show there all the way back in 1953. For his second show to date at the house's helm, designer Kim Jones didn't waste any time in making like his predecessor. He did, on the other hand, turn him into a cyborg to do so, visualizing what it would be like if the designer were a bot who'd founded the house in the distant year of 2197, rather than 1948.
But the real story was the fembot in the middle. As the house put it on Instagram, the hourglass figure and iridescent nipples at the center of the runway "represent an idealized female figure in robotic form, a futuristic monolith echoing Monsieur Dior's constant celebration of the female form divine."
In this day and age—and particularly in the year 2197—one might expect a depiction of an "ideal" woman to be a bit more diverse than a decades-old pin-up (aside from being coated in an aluminum sheen). In fact, this particular fembot has already been around for nearly two decades, on the cover art that Sorayama made for Aerosmith's album Just Push Play. There is at least one key way, though, in which the fembot challenges society's age-old heightened standards of beauty for women—and particularly for those who work in fashion: At 20,000 pounds, the figure weighed about 166 times the size of today's average runway model.