How Do We Explain These Bizarre Louis Vuitton Sunglasses?
Virgil Abloh defines sunglasses as an “accessory that gives the impression of a complete look in an instance.” If we are to go by the code of Louis Vuitton’s artistic director (this definition was taken from “Vocabulary, according to Virgil Abloh,” which is part of the 63-page press notes of his latest collection), you can infer that the look for next summer is bonkers.
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Observe the out-of-this-world frames perched on the skinny faces of the skinny models of the spring/ summer 2021 men’s collection.
As the cherry on top of look five, a boxy jacket in hurts-your-eye yellow, is a pair of thin lens reminiscent of the futuristic visor worn by Geordi La Forge, the blind chief engineer in Star Trek. It pairs quite well with the giant scorpion pinned on the chest of the jacket.
On look 36, a model is an emoji come to life with literal starry eyes. Plastered on his frames are twin flowers, the very same symbols found in the famous logo of the Paris fashion house. We’re not sure if you’ll be able to see through the bloomin’ lenses, but this model was able to follow the gang of walkers in the show.
Elsewhere, in look 47, oversized sunnies are paired with tousled hair and downturned lips. It’s the rims that are of note here. Fat and juicy, they’re painted in an array of colors—yellow, red, green, and baby blue on one eye and pink and dark and light blue on the other. These are dubbed as “Happy to see you” sunglasses. They’re also the most normal of the bunch.
And what about the craziest? They’re peppered throughout the lineup. Louis Vuitton describes the style as distorted, which just means it’s asymmetrical, as in one lens is bigger—and shaped differently—than the other. When worn, the sunglasses create the effect of a permanently cocked right eyebrow. Think The Rock and his trademark brow raise.
Is this cool? Is it weird?
A closer look uncovers the irony of the design. The magic of sunglasses is in their ability to impart symmetry to an uneven face, but these distorted designer frames only exaggerate wonky-ness.
There is also a confusing effect. For many, the purpose of wearing dark-tinted lenses is to hide from the world. Sunglasses deployed at the right moment like, say, on an elevator ride, whispers, “Do not look at me,” or even, “Do not talk to me.” These, however, dare people to stare, gawk, and, god forbid, strike up a conversation with you: “Where’d you get those cool glasses, bro?”
Of course, there are more things to consider apart from the bonkers appearance of these twisty accessories. The summer 2021 collection reacts to the dramatic events unfolding in the world. That it was presented in Shanghai (not Paris) and heavily featured the works of Black artists, including surprise performer Lauryn Hill, speak of “diversity, inclusivity, and unity,” the core values that Abloh underscores.
There is also a green ideology here as many of the looks were made from recycled materials. And, if we are to zoom in one more thought, these clothes explore the idea of boyhood or “seeing the world through the eyes of a child.”
In this stylish layer cake of meanings, we’re zooming in on that last one. It will take more time to explain all the nuances of the presentation, but maybe we shouldn’t think too hard. Like a kid, we can just enjoy the moment.
Louis Vuitton offers home delivery service at 0917 868 7166 or 0917 826 3124.