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Silhouette Press Kit

The Silhouette brand from 1964 to today


Silhouette Press Kit

The Silhouette brand from 1964 to today


Two people with visionary power firmly follow their ideas and visions and make them reality: For the first time in history, Anneliese and Arnold Schmied make more out of glasses than just a visual aide, namely a desirable accessory for better vision and appearance.
With foresight and passion they founded the company and the brand Silhouette and with it their life work. A new dimension of vision had been created with a focus on individuality - the individuality of the person as much as that of the eyewear.
In the same year the first innovative eyewear collection - largely hand-made - left the factory in Linz for destinations all over the world. New, fascinating perspectives were set in the world of eyewear fashion under the brand name Silhouette.

The vision that people love their eyewear as a fashionable accessory and wear them with joy proves to be an international success. Silhouette eyewear already conjures up the first visual experiences in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Norway, Switzerland, France, Canada, Italy, Great Britain, Sweden, Spain and the Netherlands.

1970 / 71
Silhouette eyewear - made in Austria - is a huge success and conquers the markets of the United States of America as well as south-east Asia.

The "Silhouette Journal" appears for the first time. Over the decades, this becomes one of the most important stages for the eyewear brand and its design objects. Directors and set designers are internationally renowned journal guests such as René Gruau, who created fascinating covers in the 1970's. Protagonists, along with the unique creations from Silhouette, include top models such as Carla Bruni and Markus Schenkenberg.

The international fashion world is swept away as Silhouette presents the sensational Futura sunwear collection. This is one of the first brand ambassadors and becomes a 1970s icon, which today - after countless "appearances" in movies such as "Emanuelle" - is a highly coveted collector's item.

Relations between Silhouette and the fashion and accessory world are getting closer and closer. For the first time, Silhouette creates an earring collection to complement its eyewear. And: Silhouette is the first eyewear brand to send its fascinating accessories for better vision onto the international catwalks.

Arnold and Klaus Schmied, two of Anneliese and Arnold Schmied's four children, join the company and immediately start influencing the Silhouette brand with their ideas and passions.

For the first time, Chinese lacquer is applied to Silhouette eyewear, a process realised by hand. This requires a very delicate touch and gives colours a fascinating depth.

With the plastic SPX®—the S stands for Silhouette, the P for Polyamide and the X for the secret ingredient that makes the material special—Silhouette has succeeded in creating just the right plastic for the manufacture of eyewear that rang in the age of lightness.

Silhouette creates and develops the first rimless eyewear collection: Silhouette Freeline. It became the foundation of the limitless fascination with rimless eyewear manufacturing at Silhouette and is the impetus for dedication to the genre with passion and research spirit.

1991 - 93
"Masters of Design" integrate the philosophy and spirit of the early 90s into eyewear creations from Silhouette.
Under the influence of his Memphis roots and mind set, Matteo Thun created the (S)Unlimited collection, which is indicative of the last decade of the 20th century, under the motto "flexible, versatile & fun".

One of the avant-gardes of Italian design, Massimo Iosa Ghini, enabled Silhouette to win the Austrian national design prize for an exclusive sunwear collection in 1991. In 1994, Ghini played with the "fascination of curves" in four eyewear models.

After countless small and important revolutions of the 70s and 80s, the eyewear world looked again to Linz: Silhouette had discovered titanium for the manufacture of eyewear and presented the first rimless titanium eyewear without hinges: Minimal Art. This set the benchmark in rimless eyewear design and even made the cover of the International Design Yearbook.

On the occasion of the "Art, Design and Barbie" exhibition, Barbie declares: "For Me It Must Be a Silhouette" while wearing the smallest Silhouette in the world to the show.

Possibly the most important revolution in rimless eyewear design is successful: Silhouette presents Silhouette Titan Minimal Art. At only 1.8 grams, this is the first eyewear model to be made without screws or hinges and can be individually tailored to the needs of the wearer. Limitless perfection that is loved and appreciated by more than 9 million people so far.

NASA, the U.S. space agency, is delighted with the Titan Minimal Art eyewear model and has selected it, without modifications, to be the standard eyewear for its astronauts. The screwless and hingeless eyewear weighs only 1.8 grams and ensures a perfect fit even in the zero-gravity condition in space.

On the catwalks at the New York Fashion Week, the exclusive eyewear from Austria fascinates everybody. Even as sunwear, the Titan Minimal Art quickly becomes an icon and an indispensable ‘must have’ accessory.

Titan Minimal Art is distinguished by the Space Foundation as "Certified Space TechnologyTM" for its unique technology and considerable expertise.

As one of the first manufacturers of eyewear, Silhouette recognized the necessity of intelligent sun protection for the eyes and uses not only UV filters and blue light filters, but also forward-looking IQ POL technology to protect the eye from long-term damage.

Silhouette conquers international concert halls with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. Around 70 musicians in the world-famous orchestra wear the rimless eyewear and are ambassadors of an Austrian success story.

Silhouette is celebrating its 45th anniversary, the 10th anniversary of Titan Minimal Art – the brand’s icon, and is renewing the brand — an additional milestone.

On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the iconic Titan Minimal Art Silhouette launches a Special Edition, directed by Nick Knight in the face of Nadja Auermann. A face and a pair of glasses to go around the world.

Silhouette's Crystal Collection conjures a sparkle in the eyes and in the faces of spectacle wearers - the first charming wearers are Helena Christensen and Nadja Auermann.

In Cannes Jane Fonda cannot resist and decides again to her favorite pair of Silhouette sunglasses

One of the most loyal Silhouette wearers celebrates its 60th Jubilee - congratulations to the Queen!

Lightness, minimalism, focus on the essential and an appreciation for good style – not succumbing to short-lived fashions and trends – characterize Silhouette's attitude towards life. This is now expressed in the motto feel LITE show STYLE.

Launch of the new interpretation of the most successful collection in the Silhouette history Titan Minimal Art. The Icon. An Icon for an Icon – the name of the new marketing and communication campaign which is represented by Patrick Dempsey and Cate Blanchett.

At the beginning of this year, the Silhouette Faces of LiteStyle community ensued from this attitude towards life. Well-known personalities and style-defining icons who embody and live daily the Silhouette philosophy of feel LITE show STYLE make up this community of ambassadors of lightness.

Silhouette celebrates its 50th anniversary with a reinterpretation of the cult classic “Futura”.

Owing its attributes to the flair of a creative metropolis, and finding inspiration through the colourful and vibrant lifestyle of Vienna's seventh district, the brand neubau eyewear was created in 2016. Urban lifestyle and sustainability for optical frames and sunglasses are the core elements of the brand. All frames are designed, developed and manufactured in Austria. The dedication to style and quality as well as the conscious use of resources go hand in hand with the high environmental standards that new construction sets.

Since 2017, Silhouette International also even started producing its own lenses in Linz, in the so-called Silhouette Vision Sensation Lab, an extra building especially built on the factory premises. Since then, the company has become a complete supplier of glasses and frames, producing 110,000 lenses per year with the help of 15 employees solely dedicated to this.

The year 2018 marked the year 100,000,000 glasses were produced.

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