Introducing Walter & Wassily — Our Homage to the Bauhaus Era
Learn more about the iconic art and design movement that inspired this special edition collection.
Art. Design. Furniture. Architecture. Geometry. Reduction. Throughout the halls of neubau eyewear, you’ll find plenty of Bauhaus fans with a personal affinity towards the iconic design school’s forward-thinking graphic language and principles.
And as the centennial anniversary approached, we collectively decided to celebrate the heritage and honor the world’s most influential art and design institution with Walter & Wassily, a special edition unisex sunglasses collection.
Roland Keplinger, our Head of Design and Daniel Liktor, our Global Brand Director shed some light on the inspiration and creative process behind our newest 3D-printed launch.
“In Walter & Wassily, we honor two outstanding personalities of the illustrious Bauhaus movement: founding father Walter Gropius, and painter-professor Wassily Kandinsky,” says Liktor, pictured below right wearing Walter&Wassily at the Mido Eyewear Show this February.
Talking about his personal connection to the design language that inspired these special pieces he adds, “I adore the Bauhaus look! As a chair collector I have some really nice pieces at home, like my Wassily Chair by Knoll, some S 32 dining chairs designed by Marcel Breuer and produced by Thonet and other Bauhaus influenced beauties, like the Eiermann Chair produced by Wilde & Spieth. I really like the simplicity of the design language, not just in furniture design, also in architecture.”
Similarly, Mart Stam’s cantilever chair played a key part in the design of Walter & Wassily for Keplinger, pictured wearing his designs below left. “The clean, supporting bended pipe structure was my starting point,” he explains.
Crafted with a bold titanium base, our 3D-printed Walter & Wassily frames are designed with the simplistic complexity of Bauhaus’ typical visual language in mind: graphically combined geometric shapes coupled with contrasting colors, like black and white + silver and brass.
“For the lenses, we tried all kinds of shapes, but circle looked best,” said Keplinger (pictured above). “The ribs on the front and the slits on the side of the three-dimensional eye rings represent the geometric intersecting references that were influenced by Kandinsky’s paintings and Bauhaus posters.”
It wasn’t a quick and easy process, though, says Keplinger. “We wanted to produce extraordinary frames with an excellent back story. Therefore, the design development took roughly four months, with all of the various iterations and prototypes.”
A total of 10 prototypes were produced before our stakeholders — brand management, product management, and the design department — signed off on Walter & Wassily. “The technical engineering and adaptions were particularly tricky,” adds Keplinger. “We had to continuously fine-tune for shape, size, ergonomics, and all of those types of details, like nailing the perfect curvature of the metal frame, and color combinations.”
The end result? Three ultra-cool colorways that embody the inspirational mood of Bauhaus in every way: clean lines, round corners, and extravagant yet minimalistic elegance. “It’s clear for me from the start that we should produce frames that are directly inspired by the iconic Bauhaus chairs,” says Keplinger. “The Walter & Wassily frames are a very strong graphical, modern, wearable interpretation that tell this classic story.”