The exhibition Robert La Roche: Personal View at the MAK Museum of Applied Arts / Contemporary Art is dedicated to the oeuvre of the Austrian glasses designer with Huguenot roots. He raised the status of Vienna to a metropolis of creativity, culture and design on the international stage.
What began as a one-man endeavour in Vienna’s eighth district soon developed into a globally sought-after label. With his classic and extravagant eyewear collections, Robert La Roche managed to create a global brand. “For fun, I once allowed myself the luxury of calculating how many pairs of glasses I had sold over the course of my career: as a conservative estimate, there must be about four million customers worldwide who can now see better – and who look better, too. The thought of that makes me very happy,” is how La Roche summarized his life work. Among those customers who now see (and look) better are Hollywood greats like Kevin Kostner and Meryl Streep. Arnold Schwarzenegger, too, has chosen frames from his home country. Trendsetters and avant-gardists like Yoko Ono and Andy Warhol (have) also found themselves in the designs. Some 500 objects from La Roche’s personal company archive have made their way to the MAK, which has now dedicated the designer’s first solo show to his oeuvre, including examples of how the brand also made its mark with advertising campaigns and promotional materials that were equally as bold as the designs themselves. “The La Roche success story also reflects the creative energy of 1980s Vienna,” according to the curator of the exhibition, Thomas Geisler. All of which you can relive in the MAK’s show. And in the MAK Shop you can also buy numerous original, vintage La Roche frames.
Robert La Roche: Personal View At the MAK DESIGN LAB of the MAK Austrian Museum of Applied Arts / Contemporary Art From 4th May to 25th September 2016 www.mak.at