Anne et Valentin History
Anne and Valentin’s sole existence is due to... Anne and Valentin. When these two forces of nature were struck by lightning during a chance encounter, fate offered them a future, which they shared professionally and personally for thirty years, their hearts beating as one. The deeply united couple spent their lives nurturing and expanding their brand over time. In Toulouse, where the company was founded and where its headquarters still harbor the core of the team, Anne and Valentin’s lively spirits have been an inspiration to many. The adventure truly begins in September, 1980, when Valentin the neo-hippie obtained his optician’s degree. The two lovebirds were eager to start an optical store with a different approach than what is available at the time, with a unique selection of original, unique frames and a radically different sales philosophy.
From day one, rather than trying to adapt the customer to a frame, Anne and Valentin opted for a deeper comprehension of who their customers are - how they move, live, and think. This allowed them to create the perfect frames to match their customer’s unique personalities and particularities. In those days, such an approach was nothing short of a small revolution. Valentin managed the optical side of things while Anne decorated the boutique and the windows. Both of them handled customers together, and their smiling faces were game changers in the business to create a thriving optical boutique. After a while, their approach quickly encountered limitations due to a scarce offer of frame selections. There were not enough models available, and little choice to select from to offer their customers. As boredom hovered... Anne started to draw their first frame designs sent to be prototyped in a small workshop. In 1984, they launched their first collection, soberly named Anne et Valentin. Their creations are original, colorful, lively, and ergonomically crafted entirely to respect those who wear them.
The line, the line, the line.
So it began with the concept ALPHA. Glasses made to turn heads, set apart by those famous veneers that we’ve lovingly developed towards cult status, that boldly blend two colors on the very same frame. Dynamic forms, delicate lines and cat eyes.
This line represents the essence of ANNE & VALENTIN, essential frames and strong identities for the discreet yet joyous types.
Our unique and original veneers, ANNE & VALENTIN’s historic trademark, provide unrivaled exclusivity in color and composition.
100% titanium to the tips, THE SYMBOLIQUES is a concept whose knowledge of the time-worn tenets of elegance serves all the better subvert them. The hinges and articulations in retro-vintage vocabularies send these frames back to the future with boldly inventive design. Making a design-feature of the mechanics, ANNE & VALENTIN have succeeded in bringing a softer dimension to the concept, reinforcing its aesthetic, and making genuinely lovable frames.
The chiseled models are inspired by the refined world of timepieces. They themselves give off something of the Delaunay or Duchamp’s kinetic work, to precision mechanics or the cosmic articulations of planetary movements. The curves of the end pieces culminate in dynamic gyratory flourishes while the bridge softens the ensemble. THE SYMBOLIQUES emphasizes the three-dimensionality of the object, heightening contrast and accentuating flows.
These are archetypal frames, the philosopher’s choice, for the researchers and theoreticians whose everyday constantly lean towards the extraordinary. But they are just as pleasing to the musician, the artists, or the anti-hipster, the pavement revolutionaries for whom they’re a happy counterpoint to the drone of the conventional.
Transcend the trend to rediscover style while avoiding the pitfalls of pride. Is this not, when all is said and done, the very definition of elegance? Precision, precision, precision. And reserve. Hi-tensile, serious lines, for easy-wearing frames, comfortable and unforgettable.
Recast and refined, CUT is tailored and to the point. The post-polish forms offer a blunt frontal edge that reinforces the models’ pure lines. The temple tips bear laser-engraved stripes like a discreet, shared secret, for those who know.
Sobriety fills the heart of this concept. A return to essentials, to basic chic, tailored to within a single millimeter, with no room for the superfluous.
Jazz enthusiasts will find familiar comfort in the masterful lines of these irreproachable frames whose layers of transparence and their fresh, new colors in crystalline tints and tonalities, revive the complexion and the spirits.
The LINK concept comes in saturated colors and for good reason: the series aims to enhance the features of the face, just as some well-placed punctuation might brighten up a speech.
The central theme of the forms is interlace : the link and chain enlivened by contrasting colors and games of varying transparencies.
The LINK models may also be considered the keys to a new aesthetic in eyewear as they bring the materials themselves to the fore, exploring the sensuality of touch. They are made for free and independent spirits.
Structured by metal and softened with plastic, the focal point of this series is its association of materials, equaled only by its association of subtle colors.
It’s the chameleon of the eyewear world, adapting to all personalities.
Clean gentle lines become chic and cheery in certain subtle colors. These original and bold frames make for a challenging and completely unique line that anticipates a clientele of eclectic tastes, interested in style, yes, but also in substance.
Calling Calder. Are you receiving? Yes, the feel here is distinctly Calder, the levity of his sculptures being the direct source of inspiration for this concept. Smaller models pay fine homage to the artist’s balancing acts, focusing on contrast: block-color, tubing and laces linking the separate elements all combine for an effect that could be summed up as ‘hyphenated’.
This is graphics so hardcore you could call it punctuation. Frames have presence and poise, offering the illusion of suspension and bubble-effect end pieces. A delicacy in the details belies the frames’ sense of fun. MOBILO demands irony-inflected personalities with strong centers of gravity that thrill at the sight of pure titanium.
Once again, an emphasis on the technical, on color, on games of form and volume. This is an elementary concept, whose on-the-wire weightlessness is underscored by our trademark frank tonalities.
Our designers have been trying new ways of pushing the limits of their existing color gamut, focusing on the possibility of elaborating the surface to bring depth added chromatic depth. Requiring advanced technology and appointed techniques, the creation of KROMATICS issues directly from a vast and innovative research effort.
The transparency of the material allows it to breathe, to sway between full volumes and more airy lines through the material itself, for a crystalline effect that enlivens faces with becoming freshness.
Between its block-tints and then the serigraphy to the tips of the temples, this concept comes triple-strength: color, transparency and design. Certain somewhat classical motifs, like tortoiseshell, are jolted back into life with unexpected tones.
Lattice inlayed or shot with myriad points, and with their overlays of colors and material strata, the KROMATICS come off firmly Pop, inspired by lichtenstein, Gilbert and George, modern stain glass work, plexiglass (yes, plexiglass), and even Buren... minus the columns.
A meeting of color and form, these frames are for free and independent optimists, carrying the stamp of a vibrant culture, who enjoy a sense of detail and always wake up on the right side of the bed.
ON THE ROCK
ON THE ROCK, as though wrought from stone itself, explores the work of the human hand upon the machine. They are the ultimate works in progress.
The concept was born of a furious desire for art and matter.
Through substitution and subversion - read completely bypassing certain phases of construction, we managed to divert the initial purpose of the machine to discover unfamiliar surfaces and a raw, even primitive aesthetic, that of the definitive prototype. Ultra-tailored, sophisticated, sculpted, the On THE ROCK glasses offer radical volumes with frank, exposed edges.
All the while respecting the comfort, the very ergonomics of the objects being worn, this concept highlights the artisanal nature of the Maison’s work; with their vibrations, streaks and grooves, these devilishly arty frames demand tough love, testaments each to a new modernity that infuses back-to-nature-basics with an anti-bling agenda.
ON THE ROCK frames are for fans of Spartan elegance and fine materials still tattooed with the traces of their formation (untreated wood, ceramics, polished leather...), and those fond of finding alternative uses for things, genre-bending, and design still warm from the hand of Man.
The clip is a small piece of metal, almost like a rivet, fixed on the face of the frame. It quite magically creates space, air, like an interlude, a suspension.
CLIP is full of humor and irony. It enjoys playing with volumes. The result is unexpected, surprising even, resting somewhere between a pop-art object, a mechanical part, and a construction kit. Ultra-graphic and deconstructed, with two distinct, linked parts, these frames invite the fingers to fiddle, clip and unclip to infinity. The materials and cutouts offer lively edges and angles...
The models explore very feminine forms combined with full-on mass, making for an overall ensemble of high-contrast and relief. CLIP is ludic, almost absurd, suited to strong personalities. Introverts need not apply.
Lightness interlacing are the keywords of this new concept. A titanium block as a fulcrum supports a circle of steel, permitting assemblies ordinarily difficult to obtain, even impossible. Each element is painted individually before assemblage, to give the overall effect of simple interlocking suspensions.
HIGH LINE’s method of construction makes for an accentuated perception of color, creating a new and ultra-design visual language. With such technology, the frames present possibilities for contrast as yet unseen on the market, and surprising surface-edge combinations.
The range offers a series of mixed and lively colors; the monochrome interplay of greens, pine and mint, or the more elegant alliance of vintage Bordeaux on bright yellow gold. And there’s also the chilly marriage of a blue-grey to shining silver.
Designed for a diverse range of physiognomies, HIGH LINE brings character and life to its wearer, combining humor and intelligence without swerving into extravagance.
A tale of matte/gloss contrasts, with its reverse-curves and bezels, the concept behind CINEMASCOPE proudly pushes its own boundaries, even in its branches. Refined thicknesses and an architecture of tailored oblique lines offer unique profiles, with a firm emphasis in each frame on material details. Ironically, it’s the matte parts that reflect the light. Radically original.
The desired impact, along with its execution, is nothing short of spectacular: the complete reinvention of glamour away from the glitz, the flirtatious shoulder movements and the flipping hair. This side of glamour is contemporary and cliché-free, anti-archetype, but ever regal and ever lethal.
Full of relief, the BLOOM frames have poetic dimensions drawn from research made into core, organic forms.
An Art nouveau inspired design plays with the interlocking of twin forms, for studied models that evoke natural landscapes.
As torrents of water, gardens or winds, BLOOM make floral and vegetal apparitions. A resolutely aesthetic series of quite uncommon objects, they boast bezel edges and material overlays that hint at geological strata.
Contrasts between matte and gloss, weight and lightness encourage the emergence of volumes with unexpected transparencies.
From conception to construction, these complex frames have demanded specific technologies, requiring a number of critical interventions, including successive machining. They will delight women who cleave to their singularity.
A kind of modern, optical stained glass, LADY LIGHT’s utter transparency inlayed with assorted materials is pop to the power of pop, and a delicate homage to Delaunay.
The glints of luminosity, semi-circle or arc color-inlays... conspire to diffract the light or, depending on the angle, to trap it, thereby sculpting the volumes.
LADY LIGHT comes in two color schemes, with luminescent arcades whose varied opacity makes for a range of contrast intensities.
The first, and most pop, comes in a variety of tones and tonalities: vibrant shiny hues, mouth- watering candy-color, and frosted crystalline effects.
The second scheme is subtle and very modern, with opalescent shades attractively counter- posed with foggy browns, chestnuts, a waterman blue-gray and powdery pink.
The result? A kind of ultra-modern make-up with artistic proportions, these sunshades are made for curious and sophisticated women who deftly turn heads and leave the gaze lingering.
The SUNSET CITY concept carries a sense of solidity and substance that rejuvenates the face of the wearer.
The strong, distinguished lines of certain models, the beveled rims, layered cutouts, sculpted temples and geometric proportions of others... this line is entirely focused on density, energy and light.
The women’s frames are incredibly sensual, sexy and playful, and come in hot shades, with subtle, opaline nuances as well as classic colors.
SUNSET CITY: essential, straight-forward and timeless sunshades.
SUN GRAPHIK is a sophisticated affair in terms of graphics, mechanism, color blocks and material combinations... These frames are devilishly luxurious, of an avant-garde elegance, but manage somehow to avoid all trace of ostentation.
Two planes, interlocking layers, with colorways and finishes that expose uncommon contrasts and redesigned temples: everything about this concept conspires to deliver urbane and singular objects.
The models are developed from complimentary couples of simple forms interlocked and held, as if by magic. Minimal, with an almost constructivist soul, SUN GRAPHIK belongs to collectors with an eye for materials, rarity, technique and nuances of quality.