When did face furniture get so crazy-cool? If your idea of an eyewear emporium is a clinical lab or the last word in drab, then Gentle Monster’s latest high-concept outlet will knock your specs off.
The avant-garde, fashion-forward Korean frame designers (and long-time LUXE favourites) have opened their highly anticipated Shanghai flagship, ‘The Artisan’, an industrial-chic two-floor store inspired by a master artisan and his atelier.
Inside you’re beamed to a radical art gallery, with arcane installations mashing up construction chaos with wax and paint splatters. Distressed plaster walls reveal smashed layers, a huge tree trunk lies fallen on the floor protruding over a broken brick wall (representing the process of turning trees into lumber while doubling as display shelves). After the carpentry zone, the metal atelier explores the way metal can be altered, with metal stairs, lines and three cylinders expressing its gleaming potential, plus copper and brass workshop tools. A mix of kinetic, light and sound sculptures up the ante, with vibrant hits of cobalt, teal and turquoise.
The store is staggering, but the too-cool frames and sunnies are what you’re really here for. The 2016 collection sports sunglasses dubbed The Dreamer, Love Punch and Mad Crush, with bold contemporary shapes teamed with unusual colour. Glasses, from Wild Wild to Day Dream, are ideal for those who want to look intellectual, sexy and very rock ‘n roll. Spec-tacular!
Gentle Monster / 798-802 Huaihai Lu / Huangpu / +86 21 6440 0781 / 10am-10pm daily / gentlemonster.com