Designer Karen Walker in the new Karen Walker Transformers collection. Images supplied.
Transformers is the title of Karen Walker‘s latest eyewear collection and this time it’s the designer herself who is transforming in front of the camera. Every so often we get peeks of Walker’s steely beauty but this time she has taken centre stage, morphing into many different Karens in this stunning campaign.
“In an average day I need to take on so many different personas,” says Karen. “That’s modern life for all women. The images for this campaign sprang out of wanting to reflect that multiplicity.” Those images are inspired by the captivating work of art photographer Cindy Sherman who features fictitious versions of herself in her work, as well as the stylised portraiture of Andy Warhol and Robert Mapplethorpe. The exaggerated style of the Transformers frames leant itself perfectly to Karen’s exaggerated portraits. In them she channels a James Dean look, a haughty princess and a country and western star among other characters.
“I was the scientist in the laboratory who resorts to turning the experiment on herself,” adds Karen of the Los Angeles based shoot which was shot at Smashbox Studios. “Hollywood just seemed like the perfect location to
access this kind of artifice. It’s a city that is built on re-inventing oneself.”
These new styles certainly experiment with the idea of exagerrated self with their strong frames and solid shades of silver, dusty pink, khaki, marigold and brown. The mirrored lenses add a touch of surreality to a collection that has something for whichever version of yourself you want to be. Each of the nine frames is perfectly shaped, containing clever details and finished in high-quality materials that help make Karen Walker’s eyewear continue to grow in popularity.
The question is though; Are any of these Karens the real Karen? “I am all of them – and none of them,” says Karen. “In the same way that your Facebook page or your Instagram is never really who you are. Personality today is a manufactured entity. We are all our own fictional characters.”
Transformers is available now from Karen Walker Eyewear stockists and online.