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Alexander Rodchenko, Portrait of Mother, 1924

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The View From Paris

22 Oct

This past September I attended  Silmo,  a critical international optical industry trade show held in Paris, France.  The event features innovations in frame design and fabrication.  The most gratifying aspect of  my experience at Silmo was the realization that Josephson Opticians is already a purveyor of  the majority of the industry’s exceptional product.

We have secured and maintained relationships with truly innovative and influential designers and distributors.  I value these relationships more having seen how many concepts and designs are copied to varying degrees of quality. It only makes sense to identify the true innovations and to associate with the companies investing in the research and development advancing the trends in eyewear design.

Anne et Valentin, Bevel, Lindberg, MatsudaMykita and Sama  are examples of the brands leading the industry forward in respect to advancements in fabrication.  Their designers encourage our feedback and assessment of the direction their styles are heading.

Almost a month since making purchases at Silmo, some of the merchandise has already arrived at our shops. Here are  examples of new releases:

13th-century detailing on the doors of  Sainte-Chapelle, Île de la Cité, Paris

Chrome Hearts offers  examples of matte finishes applied to titanium accented by gold vermeil  on sterling silver.  Exceptional detailing with lacquer is evident on the acetate sunglass, below.


20th-century furniture in  the collection of the  Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris


Lindberg featured green as a new colour in the N.O.W. collection’s translucent composite material and matte copper finishes on titanium components of it’s rimless Spirit collection.


Exterior of the home of the late, great, Serge Gainsbourg, Rue de Verneuil, Paris


Thin, refined metals featuring delicate filigree are making a resurgence. Oliver Peoples and Matsuda offer handsome options.


Contemporary fashion exhibited in the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Palais du Louvre, Paris


As an alternative to opaque  black, Sama  offers a palette of warm and neutral acetate colours such as vintage rose, matte beige and taupe.

The trend towards thinner acetate fronts combined with metal temples is exemplified by this frame by Oliver Peoples. Shades of grey and crystal acetates remain strong features of many collections.

Alain Mikli offers impactful frames featuring a depth of colour and dimension achieved by laminating contrasting sheets of acetate.  The gravitas associated with a thick, opaque frame seems passé  when one considers the ‘lighter’  appearance of these alternatives.

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Au Naturel

06 Oct

Maeve Brennan of Harper’s Bazaar trying on wooden framed eyeglasses, 1945, photo by Nina Leen for Life Magazine

There is a point at which a synthetic imitation can no longer substitute for an organic product.  Against your skin horn and wood offer a  tactile sensation that is sensual and familiar. They are both hypoallergenic materials sourced from sustainable resources for their use in eyewear. Josepshon Opticians is a purveyor of two brands of note which cater to clients appreciative of  things  au naturel.

Hoffman Natural Eyewear of Germany has been crafting luxurious, one-of-a-kind horn frames since 1978.  Each piece features a unique variegation of pattern and distribution of translucent colour. Although extremely light weight, stability of the frame is achieved through the lamination of 7 thin layers of horn with fibers lying in alternating directions.

Anni Shades of Alliance, Ohio, produces wooden frames of artisanal  quality and charm.  The natural beauty of ebony, koa and redwood burl are often paired with wood stained in playful colours. Striking visual  effects are achieved through the lamination of 8 layers of wood. Each frame is sealed with three coats of varnish to ensure durability.

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Portrait of Emile Marguerite Walter 1939 by Pablo Picasso

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Enduring Appeal

06 Oct

F. Scott Fitzgerald at leisure, 1920

Shane Baum’s luxury brand Leisure Society caters to the  conspicuous consumer with an appreciation of heirloom design.  The frames are intended to have lasting appeal and are investment pieces. Their inherent value is evident in the quality of their Japanese production. Precisely crafted with the intention that they should last forever, the frames are fashioned in enduring good taste.

The collection features models cast out of pure 12k, 18k and 24k  yellow and white gold plated titanium. Sophisticated enamel and laser etched buffalo horn inserts compliment the refined coined surfaces of the wire rims.


The detailing on many of the frames requires over 6 hours on a state of the art computer controlled milling machine, thus limiting production to only 4 frames per day. The effort expended in the creation of these coveted objects should be  appreciated…at your leisure.


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Select pieces from Walter Wissing and Co. have final arrived and they were certainly worth the wait.  We are proud of our affiliation with this German firm which has crafted eyewear since 1953.

Hand made to our specifications, and bearing the Josephson logo, these thin acetates feature luminous colours  muted by a textured surface.

Impression, Soleil Levant 1872 by Claude Monet, Musee Marmottan, Paris

Appearing alternately  opaque and  translucent, the effect of light on the colours on these pieces is evocative of the changing appearance of the sky in the plein-air landscapes of the impressionists.

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Designer Kay Bojesen and his iconic teak and limba monkey, 1951

Designer Arne Jacobsen in his Egg Chair, 1958

In the tradition of classic Scandinavian design,  simplicity and functionality of form are characteristic of all  LINDBERG eyewear.  The company’s global success in the manufacturing of a product of exceptional quality has been honored by the granting of an exclusive Royal Warrant of Appointment to the Royal Danish Court. This is in addition to the 64 prestigious design awards it has earned. Far more than any other manufacturer of eyewear.

A collaboration between optician Poul-Jorn Lindberg and architect Hans Dissing  resulted in the design of the original rimless AIR Titanium concept in 1983.  The minimal and light weight design featured patented hinges without screws.  Subsequent designs have evolved from the coiled titanium wire versions into ones incorporating extremely thin laser cut titanium plate.  By introducing models  incorporation  precious metals, acetates, and horn, styles have remained contemporary and consistently elegant.

Poul-Jorn Lindberg photographed by Martin Dam Kristensen

Well fitting, good looking, flexible and versatile, the brand offers a phenomenal variety of styles available in great variation  with the potential for further customization.  No other line offers more to the end wearer, and no other line offers opticians the same degree of support in  providing a consistent level of craftsmanship in dispensing the product.

 LINDBERG supports opticians in the  proper execution of skilfully mounting lenses by providing us with unique tools, patterns and machinery designed specifically for the assembly of its frames. We are further privileged to receive extensive training for assembly and presentation of the frames, often first hand, as was the case recently here in Toronto.

Peter Warrer, Henrik Lindberg and Josh Josephson at our flagship location

Josephson staff  were introduced to Henrik Lindberg, who, in 1984, became the first employ of Lindberg Optic Design. A trained architect, Henrick was initially approached by his father Poul-Jorn to solve a manufacturing problem.  He respects the company’s  philosophy of never making compromises while advancing it forward with innovations.

That being said, Peter Warrer, LINDBERG‘s Director of Sales and Marketing, informs us that the AIR Titanium Rim models- first released in 1993- have shown the greatest  growth in sales recently.  Two decades on, this remarkably minimal concept is once again leading the trend towards refined simplicity in eyewear.

We welcome you to visit all of our Josephson locations to view our extensive stock of LINDBERG products and to learn more about their potential for customization.




in the support of

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