Sunglasses That Envision a Sustainable Future

One All Every joins forces with RVS Eyewear and Ugo Rondinone to craft a limited-edition line of fully sustainable sunglasses that pay homage to the elements—and the environmental stewards who champion them.

Earlier in 2019, biodiversity experts at the United Nations released a harrowing statistic: One million plant and animal species face imminent extinction. The report resonated with Lisa Schiff, founder of One All Every, an initiative that commissions creative projects to spread awareness about cleaner, more sustainable ways of living. Prior collaborations include billboards by Ryan McGinley and Donald Moffett, furniture by Porky Hefer, and neon works by Andrea Bowers and Tomás Sánchez. One All Every’s latest endeavor, which debuted at DesignMiami/ Basel in June, is tackling an entirely new medium.

The project, called See a Clean Future, challenges the fashion industry’s rampant wastefulness through a limited-edition line of sunglasses designed with RVS Eyewear and artist Ugo Rondinone. Each element of their construction, from eco-friendly materials and tinted lenses to quotes emblazoned on the frames, has been highly considered. Transparent unisex frames feel classic, with lens options corresponding to the four elements and their respective environmental heroes: Sylvia Earle (water), Jane Goodall (earth), Wangari Maathai (air), and E. O. Wilson (fire). Each luminary offers words of wisdom inscribed on the frames and lens cloths. “We wanted to work with early pioneers of the movement,” says Vidal Erkohen, founder of RVS Eyewear. “They’ve been fighting for years and have inspired a new generation of environmentalists.” 

When it came time for manufacture, Erkohen researched far and wide how to sustainably design a pair of sunglasses. “It marks the first time that every piece of our frames, from top to bottom, including packaging and inlays, is created with completely sustainable materials,” he says. The Italian brand Mazzucchelli supplied its signature biodegradable M49 bioplastic, produced from cotton linters and wood fibers, for the frame material. Metal inlays and temple hinges are recyclable stainless steel, which is coated with ion plating to allow for seamless engraving of the quotes. Lenses, meanwhile, employ Japanese mineral glass—a greener alternative to typical polycarbonate plastic that also ensures precision clarity. Tying the collection together is Ugo Rondinone’s recycled cardboard packaging, which serves as the fifth element—the Ether—that contains all the others. 

The collaboration seems to have sparked an epiphany for Erhoken. “Every product needs to be created with sustainability in mind,” he says, noting that RVS Eyewear will launch its first completely sustainable collection next year. “Climate change is a race we can win.”

See a Clean Future will be available through One All Every until June 2020. One All Every will donate a portion of net sale proceeds to the Jane Goodall Institute, the Green Belt Movement, and the E. O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation.

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