Coming into Halloween… what to eyewear? Bats.. what else? Since Batman was created in 1939, there have been several versions of Bat Eyewear, most notably by artist Man Ray. But it seems that the first real ‘fashion bat’ eyewear were handmade and created by Edward Melcarth for Maila Nurmi (Vampira) in 1949. They were brought to Los Angeles by artist ManRay. (They are on display at Wonderland)
On the other hand eccentric Peggy Guggenheim was known for her Bat Glasses- here she is in Venice by her Palazzo circe 1947. Her Bat Glasses were also made by Edward McCarth.. so which came first Vampira or Peggy?
This was in Harpers Bazaar 2009
Just in case you want a pair you can purchase these at the Guggenheim Gift Shopfor $250.00. ‘Originally designed specifically for Peggy Guggenheim by American artist Edward Melcarth, our reproductions are made in Italy. Includes a silver lamé case. Boxed.”
Just in case you want to know- here is another Bat Eyeglass that we ran last year. Polish born Anna Zasada – photographer Jacek Zajac did a series of black and white photographs featuring what else- Bat Eyewear- Circa 2010
So there you have it, bat shades are available in so many shapes today.. but the original seem to stem from the late 40’s.