Under John Galiano, Parisian fashion house Maison Margiela has been adding increasing numbers of accessories to their line-up, from Tabi footwear to sunglasses in collaboration with Gentle Monster. The Korean eyewear brand has by the same token been collaborating with a number of luxury houses. Now the pair have come together to create a line of sunglasses, 11 in total, that subverts and twists archetypal silhouettes.
The collaborative series, which includes prescription sunglasses, were first seen as part of Margiela’s Artisanal 2022 collection. The eyewear, conceived by Galliano and Gentle Monster, is founded on concepts developed by the artisanal atelier and is available in numerous colourways.
The designs feature silhouettes inspired by archetypal shapes often found in eyewear, but that are subverted through Margiela’s principles of design. The sunglasses are crafted from acetate in traditional colourways that include black, cream, grey, transparent and tortoise with a Margiela twist accenting the silhouette. Margiela’s famous sports silhouettes, the MM002 and MM002, that traditionally wrap around the head, are here reduced and given the House’s minimalism treatment that features branding on the bridge and the famed four stitches on the arms. Other classic eyewear shapes are also inverted and decoded. An example are the MM009 and MM010, which decode the Wayfarer shape and transform it into spectacles.
Gentle Monster’s creative approach explores dualities intrinsic to individual expression – playfulness vs elegance, past vs future and delicacy vs destruction. These juxtapositions reflect both the figurative and illustrative themes inherent to the methodology of both brands, which considers the notions of how and why we dress. The evocative designs often found in eyewear, which are an infinite tool for self-expression and the body language it enables, are steeped in societal, cultural, and pop cultural associations.
To celebrate the launch of their collaborative designs, the brands will host pop-ups in seven cities around the world, where Maison Margiela’s signature black mask, exposed thread and fabric detailing will be interpreted by the Korean eyewear brand’s unique aesthetic perspective.
The Maison Margiela x Gentle Monster collaborative collection will be available on February 28.
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