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Exotica

23 Jan
2013

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   The latest arrivals from Harry Lary’s are curious specimens worthy of your attention. Produced from exquisite samples of acetate sourced from the venerated Italian producer Mazzucchelli, these frames seem exotic and luminous. 

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Illustration commissioned by Albertus Seba

    They remind me of the creatures collected by  the Dutch pharmacist Albertus Seba.  In 1734 he commissioned illustrations of every specimen he acquired  and produced a four volume catalogue documenting the diversity inherent in the natural world. 

Etching produced for Seba's Locupletissimi Rerum Naturalium Thesauri Accurata Descriptio

Etching produced for Seba’s Locupletissimi Rerum Naturalium Thesauri Accurata Descriptio

   These recent acquisitions are a welcomed compliment to the  extensive  variety of  collections  available at our stores.

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Field of Vision

23 Jan
2013

 

“Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world”.

Arthur Schopenhauer

 

 

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T.S. Elliot by Cecil Beaton, 1956 c. Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby's London

T.S. Eliot by Cecil Beaton, 1956 c. Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby’s London

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    The Left  Bank of the Seine,  in the vicinity of  the 6th arrondissement of Paris, was  renowned as a hub of intellectual and cultural activity.   For decades it’s many night clubs and brasseries  facilitated much gay revelry ,philosophical discourse and musical innovation.

Be-bop en cave, Saint-Germain-des-Pres, 1951 by Robert Doisneau

Be-bop en cave, Saint-Germain-des-Pres, 1951 by Robert Doisneau

   Since 2002  a family has occupied a boutique at 30 rue Bonaparte which showcases two generations worth of expertise in the production of  eyewear.  Francis Klein, wife Michele and daughters Betty and Dixie instill the essence of the French ‘joie de vivre’   into their  charming creations. 

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   The Klein’s have made their own acetates since the 1970’s and often laminate patterned silk and feathers within the medium.  Hand set decorative elements such as crystals and beads are the hallmarks of these  truly unique and fanciful pieces.  

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        A  new selection of these Parisian  treasures is currently in stock at our stores.

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Lytton Strachey by Dora Carrington, 1916

Lytton Strachey by Dora Carrington, 1916

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Night Vision

09 Jan
2013

11les_predateurs_david_bowie1  In acknowledgement of David Bowie’s 66th birthday, I draw your attention to a  cinematic masterwork directed by  the late Tony Scott.  The Hunger,  released in 1983, is a seminal homage to Gothic horror and features David Bowie, Susan Sarandon and a ravishing Catherin Deneuve in sumptuous settings.  There are also  short but compelling appearances by Ann Magnusan, Willem Dafoe and Peter Murphy.

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 The art of seduction and the anguish associated with loss are key themes addressed in the film.  Phenomenal ambiance is created by the use of movements composed by Franz Schubert, Maurice Ravel, J. S.  Bach and the duet for two sopranos from Leo Delibes’ Lakme.

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   The two exquisite  frames depicted above would have suited the doomed undead well.  They are new creations by Chrome Hearts and Thom Browne by Dita Eyewear.

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A Distanced View

01 Jan
2013

 

Perception is strong and sight weak.  In strategy it is important to see distant things as if they were close and to take a distanced view of close things.”

Miyamoto Musashi

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Autoportrait au Chat, 1926, Tsuguharu Foujita

Autoportrait au Chat, 1926, Tsuguharu Foujita

   At the beginning of the 20th Century Montparnasse in Paris, France,  was the the heart of the intellectual and artistic life of that country and possibly the world.  In 1913, at the age of 27 , Tsuguharu Foujita left Tokyo and quickly gained notoriety as a visual artist in Paris.   He soon encountered Modigliani, Leger, Gris, Picasso and Matisse and was eventually awarded  membership as a foreign national  to the Legion of Honor by the French government for upholding the ideals of the nation. 

 

   Even in the  age of  the avant-garde, the artist’s bold and eclectic style was deemed eccentric.  His gold earrings, fringed haircut and  round spectacles have become iconic signifiers of  Foujita’s style. 

   In the spirit of the roaring twenties in Paris, we offer to you a selection of  frames that even Foujita may have found hard to resist.  They are hand crafted by Francis KleinWalter Wissing and Co. and Anne et Valentin.

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Free Spirits

01 Jan
2013

  To compliment the release of their latest eyewear  creations , Toulouse based Anne et Valentin have produce a book of bold images and anecdotes regarding the company’s design philosophy.   Art directed by Ann Valentin, herself,  the publication is a tastful distilation of  all the inovations and savoir-faire the brand is renowned for.  It’s text offers such nuggets as this: 

   “Sweet alchemy mixing geometric cuts, brilliant colors and materials: a frame should not only reveal,  flatter and compliment, but be your signature.  Between spontaneity and meticulous design, the collection…retains this taste for paradox.”

 

Photograph by Sofi Martel

Photograph by Sofi Martel

 

Photograph By Sofi Martel

Photograph By Sofi Martel

  

These charming frames , like the model ‘Flash’ depicted above, have been  a huge success and are refreshingly whimsical.    Ann Valentin proclaims that they are a result of  “the desire to create for others what I want for myself”.

 

A display at our flagship location

A display at our flagship location

 

  In the past, the trio of artisans creating this eyewear had been heavily influenced by iconic work of  furniture designers  Jean Prouve and Charles Eames.  Their interest in the purity of form is obvious. 

  The new ‘Object’ series is inspired by the work of the late Ettore Sottsass, founding member of the Milan based design group ‘Memphis’ active in the early 1980’s.  Producing furniture, ceramics, lighting and textiles, the group’s work exemplified the application of  post-modernist  theory to design.

 

Object 2

Object 2

 

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Carlton room divider, 1981, Ettore Sottsas, manufactured by Memphis s.r.l.

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