The Vision Council and WWD will hold a panel titled “Eye on Design: An Exclusive Talk With Influential Eyewear Designers” Friday at Vision Expo East. Having previously partnered on two panels at the West iteration of Vision Expo, this is the first panel the two have held at Vision Expo East. Vision Expo is co-owned by Reed Exhibitions and the Vision Council.
Vision Expo East has three pavilions and thousands of brands dedicated to eyewear and accessories. The Underground features an array of curated brands, while The Galleria is focused on new talent. The main Eyewear + Accessories Pavilion features iconic companies, ubiquitous brands and rising stars.
“Creating a personal style begins with a vision. It begins with eyewear, and an optical wardrobe that is as unique as the individual,” said Mitch Barkley, vice president of trade shows and meetings at The Vision Council. “Vision Expo is the ultimate fashion hub for eyewear, sunwear and accessories — where the industry gathers to learn the latest trends and shop the latest styles. Through our partnership with WWD, we’re able to engage fashion-focused consumers with the style insight we’ve long had access to at Vision Expo, and, most importantly, provide our exhibitors with exposure to this captivated audience.”
The panelists will be Gai Gherardi, cofounder and codesigner of L.A. Eyeworks; Laura Howard, eyewear designer at Kenmark Eyewear, and Vladimiro Baldin, chief product and design officer at Safilo Group.
“Each panelist touts a plethora of experience in the eyewear design realm,” said Joanne Mohr, event director of Reed Exhibitions. “Laura Howard of Kenmark Eyewear oversees design of the Zac Posen women’s optical and sun collections, plus his runway collection, as well as the Vera Wang runway collection and Lilly Pulitzer. Vladimiro Baldin oversees innovation, design and product development for Safilo Group on a global scale for proprietary brands and the entire licensed brands portfolio. And Gai Gherardi is the cofounder and codesigner of L.A. Eyeworks, the renowned brand from Southern California that celebrates glasses as vehicles for individual expression. All three panelists will bring unique insights into the intricate design processes of a variety of brands in the greater industry at Vision Expo.”
In 1986, leaders from The Vision Council partnered with Reed Exhibitions and created Vision Expo to promote awareness of eye health. Over these 32 years, The Vision Council has invested Vision Expo revenue into consumer awareness initiatives, most notably Think About Your Eyes, to help educate Americans about the importance of comprehensive annual eye exams.
In addition to events geared toward boutique buyers, Vision Expo hosts several pop-up talks throughout the exhibit hall, plus several education sessions in Vision Expo’s conference program.
The panel is from 1 to 1:30 p.m. Friday at the Galleria lounge (G280) and will be streamed live via the WWD Facebook page.