Peggy Guggenheim was not only a passionate collector and patron, but one of the cornerstones of the foundation of modern art in the twentieth century. She did this with so much charisma that she attracted the most important talents of the era. Taste for beauty, unconventionality and fantasy are the features of her whole life, which also influenced her passion for fashion and accessories, such as earrings – designed by her friends, the artists Yves Tanguy and Alexander Calder.
Peggy’s thirst for curiosities and eccentricities took center stage with her sunglasses. In the Fifties her friend the American artist, Edward Melcarth, created for her the famous Butterfly model, an icon which will become part of fashion history. Large, unmistakable and playful, the glasses become Peggy signature style, and the expression of her philosophy, achieving great popularity. Their formidable surrealist lines catapult in a creative universe beyond convention, where curiosity, novelty and experimentation are not just words.
A universe that is also the way of Safilo that, in 1994, paid tribute to the iconic model by producing a new edition, on sale at the bookshop of the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice. Twenty years later, to celebrate its 80th anniversary, Safilo has created a new limited edition: the iconic blue cat-eye acetate frame comes with tone-on-tone mirrored lenses, perfectly matched with contrasting profiles in shades of brown.
Now comes a new color version, in cream with contrasting profiles in havana, which will mark an annual basis a collectors’ edition. Those model’s artistic value is highlighted by the perfect savoir-faire, timeless design, excellence and impeccable quality for which Safilo is renowned.
Lisa Immordino Vreeland, director and producer of the sleek, entertaining portrait of the American heiress and collector in her documentary “Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict” (from February 2016 in theaters) said: “Of the many photographs that exist of Peggy Guggenheim the ones where she is wearing her famous Melcarth glasses to me stand out the most. Her eccentric style is evident but a strength of character prevails most in that photograph. Safilo picked up on this trend of Peggy’s strength and independence, a trait they have displayed in their own company ethics, and decided they wanted to become embedded in her history. Why not give the rest of the world the opportunity to wear the same iconic glasses that belonged to Peggy Guggenheim? They represent style but most importantly express individuality. Did Peggy see things differently with these glasses – did she see a beautiful kaleidoscope of her Surrealist and Abstract paintings? Will the wearer have that same opportunity and step into her fantasy world? What is certain is when Safilo decided to make this special edition of the glasses they were embracing her spirit and her love of art.” And she concluded: “In a funny way through the movie, Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict we tell her story and talk about her great accomplishments and through the glasses the wearer can step in Peggy’s world. Together we have become part of Peggy Guggenheim’s history.”
Discover more about the movie at: http://www.peggyguggenheimfilm.com/