Friday’s Google Doodle pays tribute to Altina Schinasi on her 116th birthday. Altina, a versatile artist, documentary filmmaker, and inventor, passed away in 1999 at the age of 92.
The captivating artwork in the Doodle features a pair of orange cat’s eye-framed glasses. In one lens, there is a “G” and a sketch of Schinasi herself donning the eyewear that she designed. The other lens holds the letters “GLE.”
To honor their beloved family member, Altina’s son Terry Sanders and the rest of the family posted a heartfelt message on the Google website. They expressed their gratitude for her courage, kindness, and ongoing inspiration.
Originally from New York, Altina pursued her art studies in Paris before commencing her career as a window dresser for upscale stores along Fifth Avenue in Manhattan.
Notably, Altina Schinasi conceived the idea for Harlequin-shaped glasses at a time when there were limited and unflattering eyewear choices available for women. Although many manufacturers hesitated to take a chance on her design, a visionary shopkeeper recognized its potential and secured the exclusive rights to the glasses for half a year.
By the late 1930s and throughout the 1940s, Harlequin glasses became a sensational fashion accessory for women in the United States. Altina’s invention garnered her the prestigious Lord & Taylor American Design Award in 1939 and earned recognition from major magazines, including Vogue and Life.
Apart from her groundbreaking work in eyewear design, Altina ventured into documentary filmmaking. In 1960, she produced the remarkable documentary titled “George Grosz’ Interregnum,” which earned an Academy Award nomination and received accolades at the Venice Film Festival.
In 1995, she penned her memoir, titled “The Road I Have Traveled,” providing insights into her extraordinary journey.
Altina’s life and contributions to the arts were celebrated in the 2014 documentary aptly named “Altina.”
The Google Doodle serves as a tribute to Altina Schinasi’s indelible legacy as an artist, filmmaker, and trailblazing inventor, whose work continues to inspire and captivate people worldwide.
Source : UPI
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