The brand is the acronym of Giorgio, Andrea, Renato and Daniela, the four optical designers who create this new concept line of handmade spectacle frames in Italy, unique in its kind with a strong minimal modern style. GARD essence is enclosed in a design combining classic and modern within the materials surface and whose colors are inspired by nature. Each model of the different collection lines is made using the best Italian acetates, worked by the most skilled and expert craftsmen of Cadore. From 2012 to present research and development of this exclusively designed eyewear, continue through accurate study and work.
A Trip Made in Rimini
From “Story Telling” for MBO eyewear
by Gaia Galizia
In a world where the Brand-news jostle to appear, but in the end it is often something that glitters without being gold, GARD Eyewear is certainly one of the few young Italian enterprises that talk about handicraft heritage, passion and – above all – collections with a multifaceted design, rationally designed to please the needs of anyone. Giorgio, backbone of GARD design and founder of the brand, chatted with us explaining the history of the brand, the artistic and professional reasons of those that work there.
Where does the need to express themselves come from, giving life to GARD? Not only professionally but also artistically.
I once heard that “When you start criticizing others, it’s time for you to do something! If you can.” Like if you have something to say, then say it and take the risk of listening to the considerations of the others or shut up! (I feel like smiling because in the end all this happened). GARD was born from the passion for our work and the love we have for the eyes and the gazes of people, with the idea of sharing our values, the idea of beauty in everything we do and think.
The symbolism placed next to design is a concept seldom treated in the eyewear surrounding; the six elements in the GARD logo are indeed food for thoughts. How do you come up with this union?
The symbols were a wonderful discovery, when nine years ago we launched the first GARD micro collection consisting of six models, the shapes clearly recalled the geometric shapes that I helped redesign and suggested to distinguish each model. Without using names, without using numbers, underlining the fact that each model is the result of graphic lines and geometries. For example: The circle, a perfectly round coin design that we still have in our collection was considered the first model, a single line, the first that forms it by closing in on itself! The second idea was a butterfly, two lines of drawing that intersecting formed the eye and so on … We also thought about the structure of the frames, the first prototypes had apparently straight temples and front, almost without meniscus, they looked like drawings on paper, plates, something abstract, not only made of materic sense. However, they also had their own dynamic structure, in the making, in evolution, through the thickness descents made by working the acetate as if it were solid wood and then, taken back in the cutting machine when the work was finished and this gave them a materic aspect, they seemed real and its own prototypes, finished or not, perfect or not. Well, thinking about these aspects we found evident similarities with the concept of nature, whether it is linked to man or not. But the most disconcerting and fascinating thing at the same time, which derives from our imagination and creative logic, we it found by doing a research to find out if someone before us had already operated in this sense through symbols as a method of fruition. Well, symbology has always been used across civilizations as a non-verbal means of communication; the geometric shapes that we have chosen and redesigned to link them to the models represented everything that most importantly unites us, as individuals, species and world over time! We started from a design for eyewear that people would wear and we saw the whole world inside with its most important story.
What do the retro references that have been included in the collections as Cubiline tell? Are they a stylistic choice or a declaration of love for a particular period in the history of design?
Renato and Andrea, father and son who design GARD talk about eyeglasses as if they had a soul, I will always remember my father who in the 90s was a Matsuda’s representant and when he came home he opened all the samples on the bed, saying that he made love with them at this point is an understatement, I can safely tell you that my brother Andrea is no less … Together with the most beautiful memories that remain with us and that are finally renewed, as a travel companion does during the road. In fact, when someone returns from a trip, it returns changed, different from when it left but whit something that always remains within us.
If you could choose an artist to collaborate with, in what field and who would it be?
We are in love with art and with those who live with art, we are overjoyed to collaborate with me & glenda, a Woman, a special person who has always lived through the artistic expression of her works; personally there are several characters that I admire and follow from photographers like Steve McCurry to street artists like Bansky, fantasy flies as it always happens, but then for these things I always leave everything to the chance, I prefer to be carried away by the surprising magic of the unexpected!
In a future of uncertainties, what is your cornerstone?
We have always thought that there is no certainty about the future … at this point why worry about it ?! It is much nicer to wake up every day aware of what you have done and think about improving it where it is needed, or to undertake something new and different. You never get bored and you always keep traveling!
Circle is perfection, union, that which has no rupture, like the spirit, like the immateriality of the soul. Like the sky and the clouds, something we can only touch with our eyes.
Ellipse is the cyclic flow of everything, the seed of life, everything comes back to light as it was the first time. Like the earth, from which everything is born and to which everything returns continuously.
Triangle is dynamism and stability, the axis of conjunction between matter and spirit, like us, body and soul. Like the rocks of the mountain that rises from the earth to the sky.
Rhombus is fertility, reproduction, like life flowing through all things, creating a new life. Like plants, which always give rise to new shoots.
Pentagon is the absolute transparency, the purity of the crystal, like the diamond, like the soul of everything. Like flowing water, like falling raindrops.
Hexagon is change, like a butterfly born of metamorphosis, like human evolution. Like the fire that purifies and like the volcanic lava that with its passage covers the past, giving it new shape.