Craftsmanship is becoming smart
Words Antonella Reina
Vision, manual skills and innovation unite in what is becoming an increasingly solid bond in the proposals from 8000, Arias and Andrivet, three brands promoting the evolution of eyewear
What really makes an eyewear frame special to the extent that it becomes unique? It is doubtless the artisan component characterising its creation. from the choice of fine materials to the modelling of the shape, from the assembly of the different elements to the very important phases of finishing and polishing, up to the quality control stage during which all the details are carefully checked to ensure that the glasses are free from defects and meet the required standards. It is precisely thanks to these meticulous steps that are carried out by hand, that a pair of glasses can be transformed into a small work of art.
Craftsmanship in eyewear represents a kind of alchemy: the fusion of manual skills with creativity and precision. This aspect is still very much appreciated and sought after, even in a contemporary era in which the growing enmeshment of the physical and digital worlds has penetrated every aspect of our lives; leading us to the beginning of the fourth industrial revolution. Industry 4.0 was theorised about ten years ago with its basis in a German manufacturing development project. It is based on a mix of technology, digitalisation and automation that went on to inspire numerous European and global initiatives and started a process of irreversible change that has also involved the eyewear sector. In this context, brands are constantly faced with new challenges to integrate their traditional production processes with smart technologies able to respond to an increasingly fast market, without, however, dissolving the essential link with the artisan component and with all the value it represents.
Today, the possibility of craft skills coexisting with technological processes is tangible and defines the concept of 'contemporary craft'. The frames created under the aegis of this phenomenon reflect Indian buffalo horn Bentu Estu eyeglasses, Arias the tendency to bring together fashion, technology, functionality and sustainability, offering a technologically advanced visual experience. The 8000 brand contains the terms of this challenge in a name with a lofty symbolic meaning. It refers, in fact, to the 14 highest peaks in the world known as the Eight Thousand which boast altitudes of more than 8,000 metres above sea level, and is a declaration of the brand's commitment to always explore and conquer new territories in the field of design and production – even those that are the most difficult to get to.
Mykita Lite RX Eero Gold Jet Black
Neubau Shield 9040 Black Matte
Klenze and Baum Faber Sun Pine
The creation of the frames is driven by a vision that celebrates the bold innovations of the last century and embraces cutting-edge technological advances. Founded by Luca Cavallaro, an Italian designer based in new york, 8000 boasts an approach to design shaped by his particular transatlantic heritage. The frames, often offered in a limited edition, are real luxury objects – designed in the Big Apple but made in Italy. Inspiration comes from the world of technology, equipment and mechanics, where functionality represents the ultimate form of beauty and leads to a result that is as timeless as it is contemporary.
Projects from brands belonging to smaller niches also find themselves on the same track to an increasingly technological future: brands such as Arias eyewear, founded by Andrea Dentoni, who is dedicated to the innovative production of sunglasses frames in horn and wood. "In our atelier in Cagliari," he explains, "we mainly create Indian buffalo horn frames, custom-made for our customers around the world. We adopt a traditional technique learned from the Sardinian master knife makers, handed down from generation to generation since the dawn of time, alongside the use of modern technologies such as 3D modelling, the use of CNC for 3D machining on the horn, laser cutting for engravings and decorations, and 3D printing for the creation of test prototypes. We are also working on the implementation of technology for remote 3D scanning of
the face, to obtain even more accurate biometric data relating to the customer's face."
Emanuele Andrivet, on the other hand, reveals a new item not yet available on the market which we are very happy to preview. Currently at the helm of Yohji Yamamoto Eyewear, after a long exploratory study
on the possibilities offered by 3D printing for the evolution of eyewear creation, the designer is ready to launch his personal and namesake brand Andrivet, to be presented at the next Silmo event in September 2024. The models exhibit out-of-the-ordinary profiles inspired by the world of nature, plants and insects, and by artistic currents such as Art nouveau. They will be divided into two lines: one top-of-the-range line in titanium 3D printing with precious metal finishes and precious stone inserts and the other made of polyamide 3D printing.
Airy, but contemporary
Airy, but at the same time bold and contemporary, the new glasant and rimless glasses breathe in defiance of the laws of gravity, without ever losing that decisive touch of personality and appeal.
En plein air
If the outdoor world enters everyday life, everyday life turns into an adventure through the eyewear proposals by Oakley, Ombraz and Aview – brands that, although having different ambitions and stories, respond to the same ‘outdoorify’ appeal