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Tom studied art at Falmouth University in Cornwall – inspired by his idol, the video maker Tacita Dean (‘She went there, so I wanted to’) – and his approach to designing frames is informed by the way artists such as Constatatin Brâncusi and JEFF KOONS ‘understand materials and the materiality of objects’. Each pair of his glasses is the result of a long process that marries high technology with handcrafting: CAD designing, 3D-printing, hand-finishing and sculpting, and then individually moulding and casting. The results are always unpredictable. ‘Every time you open the mould, you’re never quite sure what you’re going to get. Sometimes you get amazing results and you can’t guarantee that you’ll repeat it.’ Each pair of glasses are handcrafted in a studio in Cambridge, a bespoke technological approach to craftsmanship. Using 3D face scanning and computer aided design as an approach to widen the sunglasses manufacturing industry and open boundaries within monopolized industry. Tom has been experimenting with short runs of frames under his own name using unusual materials – graphite powder, carbon fibre, metal shavings: you name it, he’ll try mixing it with resin and moulding it. It all began when he was working at his dad’s prototyping plant, which produces everything from to artists’ sculptures to medical equipment to Formula 1 components. They were producing optical equipment, he remembers, ‘and I got to thinking about eyewear. Why is it usually so boring? Why is there so little innovation?’ He started using the facilities to play with new shapes and fabrications, bringing to it all his understanding of form and sculpture that he had developed as an artist.

Read more about Tom and his ‘Historic SS20 Show’ - Love Magazine