Geneva, November 4, 2021 – the 2021 prize list of the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG) was unveiled on Thursday November 4 during a festive awards ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of the GPHG.
Poetically hosted by Edouard Baer, the ceremony honoured contemporary watchmaking excellence and creativity by handing out 19 prizes to winners announced by the 30-member jury headed by Nick Foulkes.
The ultimate ‘best in show’ distinction, the “Aiguille d’Or” Grand Prix, was awarded to Bulgari for the Octo Finissimo watch.
The Audemars Piguet, Bernhard Lederer, Chopard, Christiaan Van Der Klaauw, CIGA Design, De Bethune, Furlan Marri, Grand Seiko, Louis Vuitton, MB&F, Piaget, Tudor, Van Cleef & Arpels and Zenith brands were also saluted by the Jury and the GPHG Academy for the quality of their creations in various categories.
The Special Jury Prize, which rewards a personality or an influential institution on the watchmaking scene, was won this year by the Dubai Watch Week.
Relive the highlights and view pictures of the GPHG 2021 awards ceremony on our official website: gphg.org
The 2021 nominated watches, including the 18 award-winners, are on display at the Musée Rath in Geneva until November 14, 2021. On the occasion of its 20th anniversary, the GPHG also invites you to discover – within the setting of this exceptional exhibition – the 20 watches that won the “Aiguille d’Or” Grand Prix between 2001 and 2020. The 2021 award-winning watches will subsequently be presented during Dubai Watch Week, from November 24 to 28, and then in Paris from December 2 to 5.
Below are the 2021 Award Winners:
“Aiguille d’Or” Grand Prix is awarded to Bulgari Octo Finissimo
Octo Finissimo Perpetual Calendar, the slimmest in the world, redefines the limits of contemporary fine watchmaking, a dynamic that began in 2014 and involved rewriting the heritage conventions of traditional watchmaking year after year based on modern codes. A successful exercise: Octo Finissimo has set a trend and reinvented high-flying contemporary watchmaking by bringing it that touch so brilliantly mastered by the Italian House of Bvlgari: L'Estetica della Meccanica, or the art of in-depth innovation with regard to both form and substance. Aesthetics are inseparable from functionality when it comes to reinterpreting a sophisticated classic horological complication in a resolutely contemporary manner. The outcome? No less than 408 components interacting within the extremely limited space provided by the slender 5.80 mm case of the Octo Finissimo Perpetual Calendar. The development of the 2.75 mm calibre required the movement design engineers of the Manufacture in Le Sentier to devise new solutions, such as the use of a micro-rotor and the optimal use of the space between the components without reducing their dimensions. Testifying to true genius in the realm of miniaturisation, this development powers the hours and minutes hands along with all the perpetual calendar functions: retrograde-display date, day, month and retrograde-display leap years. They are adjusted by means of three correctors: one for the date at 2 pm, another for the month at 4 pm and a third for the day between 8 and 9 o’clock.
LIMELIGHT GALA PRECIOUS RAINBOW
Ladies’ Watch Prize is awarded to Piaget Limelight Gala Precious Rainbow
Re-interpretation of a vintage piece from 1973, the Limelight Gala model features an elegant round case sublimated by two asymmetrical extended lugs that are cambered in order to perfectly fit any wrist. The voluptuous nature of its silhouette is accentuated by a bezel set with dazzling brilliant-cut sapphires and tsavorite. This creation continues Piaget's traditional expertise in gold work, epitomised here in the outstanding beauty of this delicately-crafted bracelet. With its elegant hand-engraved finish, the bracelet and its "Palace Décor" produce an almost iridescent effect, like a ribbon of raw silk wrapped exquisitely around the curve of the wrist. Inspired by Haute Couture techniques, it is on its reverse side that the bracelet reveals all its technical virtuosity. Its multitude of assembled links create an effect of extreme delicacy, in which each part is crafted to perfection to form a golden "fabric" of exceptional lightness.
VAN CLEEF & ARPELS
LADY FÉERIE WATCH
Ladies’ Complication Watch Prize is awarded to Van Cleef & Arpels Lady Féerie watch
Fairies, protective muses of Van Cleef & Arpels
Ever faithful to a poetic view of life, Van Cleef & Arpels instills a distinctive dimension into the art of watchmaking: that of dreams and emotions. A blend of inventiveness and fantasy, the Maison’s creations interpret the measurement of time as an invitation to imagine, wander and revel in happiness.
Initiating one of Van Cleef & Arpels’ most cherished traditions, the Maison’s first feminine figures were created in the early 1940s, in the form of precious ballerina and fairy clips. Conceived as symbols of joy and hope, the fairies rapidly won over collectors with their graceful postures and delicate wings. Seemingly ready to soar into the air, they are often endowed with a rose-cut diamond face crowned by a headdress. From 2007 and the first Lady Féerie watch, these ethereal silhouettes have accompanied the passing hours, like the guardians of Van Cleef & Arpels’ Poetry of Time.
Lady Féerie watch
A new addition to the Féerie timepieces collection, this piece blends watchmaking skills and traditional craftsmanship within a delicately proportioned 33mm case. In a dreamlike scene, a fairy marks the passage of time with her magic wand by the gentle light of the Moon.
Like a protective muse, a fairy in a sapphire and diamond gown watches over Van Cleef & Arpels’ Poetry of Time. Her face, depicted by a diamond, forms a dazzling contrast with the bluish tones of the sky, in guilloché mother-of-pearl. The same tones adorn her translucent wings, crafted from a combination of plique-à-jour and grisaille enamel. Used together by the Maison for the first time on a single motif, the techniques create an interplay of shades and effects of depth on the wings, which are also edged with intricately-set diamonds following the enameling work. Seated on a cloud of iridescent white mother-of-pearl, this feminine figure points out the minutes with her magic wand; meanwhile, the Moon harbors the passing hours in a window of mother-of-pearl, haloed by a gentle glow. On the back of the watch, the visible oscillating weight is engraved with a full Moon in a star-studded sky.
Watchmaking, jewelry and traditional craft skills have come together to bring this poetic scene to life. The Lady Féerie watch is fitted with a self-winding mechanical movement, with a retrograde minute display and jumping hours. Great precision was required in its design and assembly, to fit this sophisticated movement into a Lady case just 33mm in diameter. The case is embellished with a rounded sapphire glass, maximizing the light that enters and providing a gentle finishing touch to the watch’s silhouette.
HI-BEAT 36000 80 HOURS CALIBER 9SA5
Men’s Watch Prize is awarded to Grand Seiko Caliber 9SA5 Hi-Beat 36000
The Hi-beat 36000 80 Hours watch offers a new perspective on the nature of time. Its dial is inspired by the slender and strikingly beautiful white birch tree forests that thrive in northern parts of Japan, and that grow in profusion near the Grand Seiko Studio Shizukuishi where this and all Grand Seiko mechanical watches are made. The intricate texture, fine detail and delicate subtlety of the watch opens onto the distinctive natural environment of Japan and the exquisite craftsmanship of Grand Seiko.
The watch is powered by the revolutionary Caliber 9SA5, released in 2020 in celebration of the 60th anniversary of Grand Seiko. The SLGH005 watch is the first creation equipped with the new caliber to join the main Grand Seiko collection. Caliber 9SA5 has a precision rate of -3 to +5 seconds a day and achieves a long power reserve of 80 hours. The precision, power and slimness of Caliber 9SA5 are the result of the radical re-design of key structures.
The escapement is entirely new and was developed in-house. It enables the escapement wheel to transmit power directly to the balance, leading to an efficiency increase. It is unique in that, in one direction, power is transmitted directly to the balance while in the other it is via the pallet fork, as in a traditional escapement.
9SA5 uses a new and special free-sprung balance developed for this caliber. It retains its precision for longer and is more resistant to shock and friction. While the current Caliber 9S uses a flat hairspring, 9SA5 uses an overcoil, whose curved shape was decided after more than 80,000 simulations with the result that its performance is optimized in every possible position. Its unique design allows for its isochronism to be adjusted.
The movement is as beautifully finished as it is efficient. The bridge has a gently curving outline that is inspired by the shapes of Mt. Iwate and a bend in the Shizukuishi River near the studio where the watch is made.
The watches powerful hands and grooved, prominent markers ensure perfect legibility and its Zaratsu polished, distortion-free mirror finish and delicate hairline finish alternate to give the case a quiet and harmonious glow. The case has wide lugs and a low center of gravity that ensure that the watch sits easily and securely on the wrist. The design is true to the Grand Seiko Style defined back in 1967 with the celebrated 44GS, but its heritage is combined with a powerful contemporary feel that points towards a new era.
Men's Complication Watch Prize is awarded to MB&F LMX Titanium
LMX: celebrating 10 years of Legacy Machines.
Back in October 2011, MB&F had just launched Legacy Machine No.1, the first creation of a new collection, alongside the existing Horological Machines. LMX returns to the earliest encounter with the Legacy Machine collection, utilising the same expression comprising a central flying balance wheel and two dials... although everything else is different.
Those familiar with MB&F’s very first Legacy Machine will instinctively know how LMX operates: two dials of stretched white lacquer, each with its own display of hours and minutes. Unlike the first Legacy Machines however, both dials are tilted at an angle – a more complex feature, requiring the transfer of energy from horizontal to vertical planes thanks to conical gears.
While the first few Legacy Machines took a selective approach to what was showcased between dial plate and sapphire crystal dome, later models such as the LM Perpetual were more open and demonstrative about their mechanical prowess. LMX follows this latter approach, revealing functional elements such as the battle-axe-shaped escapement bridge and gear-train components. Three large wheels are particularly visible: placed next to each winding crown, two are set in motion when setting the time on the corresponding time display, while the gear at 6 o’clock is the common seconds’ wheel.
Of particular note is the new bespoke balance wheel, a 13.4mm behemoth with inertia blocks that marks a departure from the more traditional screwed balances and offers greater accuracy to the watchmaker in regulating the heart of LMX. Other refinements include the polished arms of the straight bridges exposed on the dial plate, manually finished to impart a curved, or bercé, profile on their upper surfaces.
In another nod to the world-first vertical power reserve indicator of Legacy Machine No.1, LMX builds on this slice of MB&F history, with a completely novel three-dimensional display that showcases the engine’s impressive seven days (168 hours) of power reserve. In this evolved display, there is the option to select between two modes of counting down the power reserve. Two markers are positioned on opposite sides of a hemisphere; one framed by an arched scale numbered 1 to 7, another with a scale showing the days of the week.
This complex and completely novel interplay of components is given an additional level of intricacy, by the rotation of the entire power-reserve display itself. This allows wearers to choose their preferred mode of power-reserve indication: by continuing to wind the battle-axe crown even after the power reserve is fully replenished, wearers can adjust the orientation of the indication in order to make the day-of-the-week or numeric scale more visible when LMX is on the wrist.
Like a perfectly balanced X, the engine of LMX is deeply symmetrical – not only dial-side but also as observed through the sapphire case back, revealing the three barrels placed evenly around the centre, accentuated by the sunray pattern of the Côtes de Genève finishing. A treat for those who can read the language of watch movements, who can discern expert intent and refined purpose behind the placement of each component.
ROYAL OAK “JUMBO” EXTRA-THIN
Iconic Watch Prize is awarded Audemars Piguet Royal Oak “Jumbo” Extra-Thin
The 39mm “Jumbo” is presented with a full 950 platinum case and bracelet as well as a smoked green dial adorned with a sunburst pattern. This is the first time that this configuration has been employed within the 15202 collection. Just 8.1 mm in thickness, the case also confers a slender appearance. The white gold applied hour-markers and Royal Oak hands are treated with luminescent coating, aiding legibility in dim light. The “Audemars Piguet” signature is positioned below noon, while the AP initials are located at 6 o’clock, as “Jumbo” convention dictates. At the heart of the watch is the selfwinding Manufacture Calibre 2121 fitted with a 22-carat gold oscillating weight. The inventory of functions includes: hours, minutes and date.
DB KIND OF TWO TOURBILLON
Tourbillon Watch Prize is awarded to De Bethune DB Kind of Two Tourbillon
Two dials, two identities. A technical and aesthetic exercise that opens up a whole new field of research. A contemporary take on the double-sided watch.
Two very different faces, both aesthetically and technically
The DB Kind of Two Tourbillon is perfectly reversible and can be worn on either side according to the mood of the moment.
The front side of the DB Kind of Two Tourbillon displays a dial featuring a sleek, contemporary design, with central hours and minutes hands as well as a tourbillon at 6 o'clock, complete with a 30-second indication. Extensive work has been done on integrating polished, curved shapes, matt or glossy components, different thicknesses and levels, thereby creating a sensation of ample space and optimal volume, given the minimum height available for a tourbillon watch. A new type of deltoid-shaped bridge – this time perfectly symmetrical – is positioned in the centre, like an isosceles triangle that contributes to the overall sense of harmony.
The other side reveals a dial based on more traditional aesthetic inspiration, with a finely hand-guilloché central part surrounded by the numerals already featured on the dials of De Bethune models such as the DB8 and DB10. The tourbillon with its seconds has vanished, and on this face the hours, minutes and more surprisingly the seconds hands are all centrally positioned. This represents an extremely subtle technical challenge that is not necessarily perceptible at first glance, and therein lies the elegance of this timepiece.
Floating lugs playing their role to the full
Every detail has been taken into consideration. Easy to use, yet highly complex, the system of floating lugs lends itself particularly well to the "pivoting" of the case.
CHRISTIAAN VAN DER KLAAUW
CVDK PLANETARIUM EISE EISINGA
Calendar and Astronomy Watch Prize is awarded to Christiaan Van Der Klaauw CVDK Planetarium Eise Eisinga
Christiaan van der Klaauw Astronomical Watches proudly presents the unique art piece CVDK Planetarium Eise Eisinga. This astronomical timepiece gives you storytelling, science, in-depth history and art. It is a wonderful story to tell but above all to wear. It all started in 1781 with the universal genius Mr. Eise Eisinga who built a Planetarium in his living room on his ceiling to disprove a contemporary prophecy that certain planets were on a collision course and that the end of the world was therefore imminent. Now in 2020 the oldest still working Planetarium in the world meets the smallest mechanical Planetarium in the world...
THE SMALLEST MECHANICAL HELIOCENTRIC PLANETARIUM IN THE WORLD
Our in-house designed module gives you the smallest mechanical heliocentric Planetarium in the world. It displays real time the solar orbits of Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. It also shows you the minutes, the hours, the date and month. The smallest mechanical Planetarium in the world is located at the 6 o’clock position. The colored planets are hand painted. The golden Sun is positioned exactly in the middle of the Planetarium. The planets orbit around the sun as follows:
Mercury: 87.97 days
Venus: 224.70 days
Earth: 365.24 days
Mars: 686.98 days
Jupiter: 11.86 years
Saturn: 29.46 years
The Swiss movement is modified for Christiaan van der Klaauw to create more space as we need this to build the Planetarium module on top of it. The watch has a twin barrel that gives a power-reserve of 96 hours. The Planetarium is connected to the date, so it is very easy to set the watch and to keep your planets correct. This is important, you don't need to be an astronomer to wear such a complicated timepiece.
The vibrant and mesmerizing dial is a micro oil hand painted dial - portraying the wooden Planetarium ceiling at the Royal Eise Eisinga Planetarium Museum.
ALTIPLANO ULTIMATE AUTOMATIC
Mechanical Exception Watch Prize is awarded to Piaget Altiplano Ultimate Automatic
The Altiplano Ultimate Automatic dressed in white gold and Piaget’s signature blue. The secret to this Swiss automatic watch’s technical prowess lies in its intricate design. The case-back of the white gold case serves as the mainplate to which 219 components are affixed. Piaget craftsmen’s precise technique has also allowed for a suspended barrel, held in place by a single bridge on the dial side. This impressive men's ultra-thin watch highlights the signature codes of the Altiplano collection from its alternating double and simple indexes to its off-centred hour and minute display. Its modern open-worked design gives this luxury white gold watch a pure and contemporary aesthetic that allows you to bask in its ingenuity.
Chronograph Watch Prize is awarded to Zenith Chronomaster Sport
This worthy descendant of the Chronomaster lineage features a sleek, robust and beautifully proportioned steel case measuring 41 mm wide with pump-style pushers. It is driven by the new high-frequency El Primero 3600 calibre offering greater performance and precision than ever. Endowed with a 60-hour power reserve, the mechanism and its striking architecture can be admired through the sapphire display back revealing a blue column wheel and open rotor marked with the five-pointed Zenith star. The new Chronomaster Sport is the only watch to feature a 1/10thof a second display etched directly on its polished and graduated black ceramic bezel. The exceptional legibility ensured by contrast effects continues on the particularly refined black or white dial bearing the signature El Primero tri-colour chronograph counters in blue, anthracite and light grey, each graduated to 60 for intuitive and readings. This distinctive new comer is teamed with an eminently comfortable integrated steel bracelet or a textured cordura-effect rubber strap option, secured by a steel folding clasp.
TAMBOUR STREET DIVER SKYLINE BLUE
Diver's Prize is awarded to Louis Vuitton Tambour Street Diver Skyline Blue
The new Tambour Street Diver is everything that Louis Vuitton symbolises – high artisanal quality, multi-functionality, creative ingenuity and the freedom of expression. It continues the House’s horological journey into the unexpected, one that began in 2002 with the launch of the Louis Vuitton’s very first watch.
Crafted from a single block of metal and larger at the base than at the top, the unique shape of the Tambour was inspired by a drum. With applied horns that seamlessly integrate the case and strap, the position of the hours are indicated on the case-band by the 12 letters “L-O-U-I-S-V-U-I-T-T-O-N”. The Tambour has, in two short decades, become an iconic and instantly recognisable watch.
Like all great designs, the Tambour case is timeless and adaptable and, over the past 19 years, has taken on various forms from spectacular high jewellery masterpieces to the acclaimed Tambour Horizon connected watch, via models boasting the most complications such as 2020’s Tambour Curve Flying Tourbillon Poinçon de Genève.
This year, this iconic watch has been reimagined in the form of the Tambour Street Diver, taking Louis Vuitton into the realm of high-end sports watchmaking with a timepiece designed to go from the gym to the club, the beach to the office. Robust and edgy with a decidedly sporty outlook, the Tambour Street Diver brings together all the requirements of a traditional dive watch while retaining the colourful, creative and unconventional style elements that have always been central to the House.
Encapsulating the energy and richness of city life, the Tambour Street Diver is vibrant, bright and offers something for everyone in a chic, ultra-modern package. Challenging the codes of more utilitarian timepieces, it was born as a watch with an urban outlook rather than as a traditional diving instrument, yet its underwater credentials have not been compromised.
By looking beyond its surface, the sportier aspects of the Tambour Street Diver are revealed. From the screw-down crowns and 100m of water-resistance, to the generous coatings of Super-LumiNova on dial elements and inner rotating bezel, all bear witness to the functional practicality of this Swiss-made highly crafted watch.
The diving scale itself has been placed below the sapphire crystal on the turning flange – the angled ring at the outer edge of the dial. The benefits of this internal rotating bezel are twofold: firstly, the top of the case is kept clean and minimal in the image of all of the watches in the Tambour family, secondly, the gentle inwards slope of the flange draws the eye to the centre of the dialcreating a feeling of depth and intensity.
The dive bezel is set via a colour-contrasting crown at 1.30 bearing a diver’s silhouette to distinguish it from the winding crown at 3 o’clock. Using the quirky yet inventive “Align the V” concept, the letter V on the diving scale is rotated to align with the colour-matched V at the tip of the minute hand, the two forming an X that marks the beginning of a dive, the start of a new adventure. The time spent under water is then read on the internal bezel, the first 15 minutes highlighted by a vivid, colour-blocked scale.
Keeping its functionality hidden behind a disruptive design, the Tambour Street Diver perfectly mirrors the contradictory city life and the juxtaposition of nature aligning with an urban environment.
To this end, the watch’s launch campaign aims to reveal a new city perspective focusing on water – a key element in enabling urban populations and ecosystems to grow and prosper harmoniously. Whether inside or out in the open, in public squares, gardens or parks, below ground or from great heights, water brings life to the city in all of its forms.
And just as water itself takes on infinite shapes, the Tambour too has proved to be eternally adaptable with its tapered case making the watch suitable for all wrist sizes. The Tambour Street Diver is interpreting sports-chic in its own unique way.
The clever quick-change strap system perfectly crafted by Louis Vuitton over the past three years, further enhancing the watch’s capacity to morph from day to evening, casual to formal, sporty to smart.
Tambour Street Diver Skyline Blue
A 44mm, two-tone case in blue-PVD and stainless-steel houses a deep-blue dial featuring a small-seconds at 6 o’clock, Super-LumiNova-coated white hands, numerals and indexes plus sky blue accents. Presented on a navy-blue rubber strap with light blue logo or light blue strap with navy logo. Automatic movement.
Jewellery Watch Prize is awarded to Flower Power
Among the treasures in Chopard’s emblematic Red Carpet Collection, the “Flower Power” jewellery watch, exquisitely crafted by the Maison’s artisans, testifies to the dreamy inspiration of Co-President and Artistic Director Caroline Scheufele, who has chosen to honour the Paradise theme.
The Paradise-themed Red Carpet Collection 2021 takes us into a universe dear to the Maison: that of unspoilt, generous and sublime nature. Among the 74 Haute Joaillerie creations composing this precious array – a number honouring the 74th Cannes Film Festival of which Chopard served as official partner – the “Flower Power” jewellery watch pays tribute to exceptional gemstones. When instilling a baroque, fanciful spirit into the Collection, Caroline Scheufele drew inspiration from the lush nature of the mythological or real places populating her fantasy repertoire. A bountiful Garden of Eden, where precious stones are picked like berries, where plants, birds and animals offer their vibrancy, their songs and their spectacular colours.
Thanks to its unique watchmaking and jewellery expertise, the artisans of the Geneva-based Maison have thus adorned this timepiece with pink sapphires and pear-shaped as well as brilliant-cut diamonds, assembled into subtle flower garlands totalling around 30 carats.
The pink mother-of-pearl dial itself is meticulously set with 12 pink sapphires. In tribute to a Paradise of light and colour, the entire watch is made of ethical Fairmined-certified 18-carat white gold reflecting Chopard's commitment to sustainable luxury.
In Chopard’s Geneva workshops, more than 30 talented artisans have combined their talents in pushing the limits of feasibility – from lines to volumes, from goldsmithing to precious stones – to give life to the jewellery composing this prestigious collection.
LM SE EDDY JAQUET 'AROUND THE WORLD IN EIGHTY DAYS'
Artistic Crafts Watch Prize is awarded to MB&F LM SE Eddy Jaquet 'Around the World in Eighty Days'
MB&F puts the work of a traditional artisan in the spotlight with the LM Split Escapement ‘Eddy Jaquet’ edition: a series of eight unique pieces featuring the extraordinary imagination and skill of the master engraver, depicting the novels of Jules Verne - including "Around the World in Eighty Days".
Eddy Jaquet is recognised throughout the rarefied circles of independent watchmaking as the man whose transformative touch can turn a watch into a rich storytelling tapestry. The most memorable work of the Neuchatel-based Jaquet is characterised by the depth of its scope and ambition; it is classical in style and heroic in its execution of human figures.
The engraved dial plates of the LM SE Eddy Jaquet pieces are inspired by the novels of Jules Verne, the 19th-century French writer widely acknowledged to be the foremost pioneer of science fiction. For each unique piece, Eddy Jaquet read (or re-read, in some cases) the original work by Jules Verne and viewed any significant secondary creative works based on the books, such as the original published illustrations or films. He then created his own original sketches on templates of the dial plate, depicting key scenes from each story, sometimes combining several tableaux in a single dial plate as a graphic tapestry of storytelling.
The engravings are executed directly on the mainplate of the LM SE movement, which also acts as the dial. In certain parts, the dial-plate has a thickness of 1.15mm, which allows Jaquet ample space to engrave even in deep relief. However, it sometimes measures only 0.35mm, requiring him to work with an extremely light touch – still making sure that the overall aesthetic of the engraving is not compromised.
To fully bring out each illustrated scene, Jaquet uses the full range of engraving finishing techniques – also applying in certain parts a dark rhodium alloy by hand, adjusting the shading of each detail according to the scene.
BLACK BAY CERAMIC
“Petite Aiguille” Prize is awarded to Tudor Black Bay Ceramic
BLACK BAY CERAMIC
TUDOR is launching the Black Bay Ceramic model, an extraordinary watch and symbol of the brand's technical expertise, with a case in matt black ceramic, a Manufacture Calibre and a Master Chronometer certification from METAS.
The Black Bay Ceramic is a prime example of TUDOR's expert command of one of the industry's most demanding standards in terms of chronometry and resistance to magnetic fields. Tested by the Federal Institute of Metrology or METAS, this Black Bay model is the epitome of high-tech aesthetic language. Its matt black ceramic elements and black Manufacture Calibre accentuate the Black Bay Ceramic’s outstanding performance.
TUDOR has successfully submitted its Black Bay Ceramic model for tests to obtain a Master Chronometer certification as part of a constant bid to improve the quality of its products. This is the first application of this standard to a watch in the TUDOR collection. This certification, which requires a substantial number of changes to the TUDOR Manufacture Calibre, will mean that TUDOR will be able to offer accreditation by an independent body, confirming the excellent quality of its watches.
Challenge Watch Prize is awarded to CIGA Design Blue Planet
The only hand is the mariner symbol, by pointing at the still hour chapter ring and the rotating minute chapter ring, time can be clearly read.
Horological Revelation Prize is awarded to Furlan Marri MR. Grey Ref. 1041-A
Furlan Marri was founded in Geneva by two young enthusiasts a year ago. One is a Swiss watch designer, Andrea Furlan, who has worked with Dominique Renaud (DR01 Twelve First project), the other is a Middle Eastern collector and artist, Hamad Al Marri. The first story told by Furlan Marri is that of the Mecha-Quartz chronograph, a mechanical module on a quartz base, invented in the 1980s (in Switzerland and Japan), during the quartz crisis, in order to rediscover the feeling of a vintage mechanical chronograph. This first model was funded in less than a minute by a crowdfunding campaign, in March 2021, created in less than a year, from the first sketch to the prototype and crowdfunding campaign in the middle of the pandemic situation. Crafted with care and designed for an attention to details are an important part of the Furlan Marri DNA. In the form of ephemeral collections, each one telling its own story, Furlan Marri wants to make each collection a challenge in itself, both in terms of the retail price or the overall experience.
TAMBOUR CARPE DIEM
Audacity Prize is awarded to Louis Vuitton Tambour Carpe Diem
The 21st century jacquemart watch
By combining exclusive high watchmaking caliber with a subversive Vanitas, Louis Vuitton orchestrates a scintillating show with the Tambour Carpe Diem. This virtuoso timepiece writes a new chapter in the history of the jacquemart watch.
Having produced several special orders for watches with automata in secret for a select group of clients, Louis Vuitton decided to lift the veil on the mystery by creating a one of a kind model. It took two years of development for the Tambour Carpe Diem to join the House’s watch collections. “Our aim was to get off the beaten track”, explains Michel Navas, Master Watchmaker at La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton. “We wanted to bring to the jacquemart our vision of the 21st century with all the energy and creativity characteristic of our brand since it began producing watches in 2002.”
Originally, jacquemarts were automata created to strike the hours on church bell towers. When watchmakers miniaturised them on timepieces, their function became essentially decorative – to add a bit of fun to the dial – and the time continued to be indicated by classic hands.
Today, Louis Vuitton wanted to give jacquemarts back their original meaning. In order to do this, the framework of the Tambour Carpe Diem was built around two major axes, a perfect mastery of this type of calibre in which the automaton is truly functional as it tells the time on demand, without hands.
By pressing a push-piece, the dial’s miniature scenery comes to life on the wrist and the story’s protagonists, the snake and the skull which perform the role of jacquemarts, indicate the time.
To this is added another determining feature in the creation of this high-watchmaking timepiece, a unique stylistic approach on the historic symbolic art theme of the Vanitas, tackled in a way that is both positive and subversive.
Not content simply to allow the model to mark the passing of time, Louis Vuitton has provided additional watch complications. The Tambour Carpe Diem has four of these. A jumping hour, a retrograde minute, a power reserve display and the mechanism of the automata of which there are also four. “The prowess was to create a mechanical movement that is quite powerful to integrate and smoothly operate all these functions that had never been brought together before”, explains Michel Navas.
On the Tambour Carpe Diem, the time can be read on demand. To reveal it, simply push the reptile-shaped push-piece on the right of the case. The central snake’s head lifts up to reveal the hour aperture positioned on the forehead of the skull, while the rattlesnake tail oscillates towards the minutes, placed below the power reserve hourglass.
While Monogram Flowers appear in lieu of an eye, the skull’s jaw emits a mocking laugh from which emerge the words “Carpe Diem” – “Seize the day”, in the words of the poet Horace, encouraging people to make the most of every passing day.
This amazing spectacle, which lasts for 16 seconds, is all the more remarkable as the reptile and skull move in such a bafflingly harmonious way.
The readability of this unique complication watch is peerless.
Entirely developed and assembled at La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton, this calibre LV 525 demonstrates true high-watchmaking prowess and is currently the subject of several patent applications.
Another unique feature of the Tambour Carpe Diem is the design of its movement.
Visible on the back of the timepiece, the calibre has been assembled in the shape of a skull, echoing the Vanitas on the dial.
An ultra-sophisticated contemporary aesthetic
Depicted since the 15th century on pocket watches and clocks, these skulls, skeletons and hourglasses are an allegory of the passing of time. In order to bring this Vanitas up-to-date, Louis Vuitton has modernised its attributes, entrusting its manufacture to the very best Swiss craftsmen such as Anita Porchet for the enamelling and Dick Steenman for the engraving. Over 50 hours’ work were dedicated to enamelling the snake and the dial. To bring to life the rattlesnake that appears in profile on the case’s push-piece, Dick Steenman crafted gold in a profiled, fluid manner in order to accentuate the crawling effect.
Sculpted from gold with incredible precision, the skull, reptile and hourglass are enhanced by the timeless modernity of Louis Vuitton emblems. Like the Monogram flowers engraved on the skull, tattooed on the snake’s scales or appearing in blood red on the skull’s eye socket. The delicacy, transparency and colours of the enamel, which are particularly remarkable and realistic on the teeth of the jacquemart, enhance the relief on the dial, suggesting – even when the hour has not struck – the idea of movement, inspiring the protagonists of the Tambour Carpe Diem in a celebration of existence.
CENTRAL IMPULSE CHRONOMETER
Innovation Prize is awarded to Bernhard Lederer Central Impulse Chronometer
Lederer Watches' Central Impulse Chronometer is the fruit of ten years of labour from Bernhard Lederer. This refined, gray gold, 44 mm chronometer is fitted with a blue dial featuring a sophisticated pattern and two openworked small seconds. Through those, the movement's design, finishings and structure are revealed.
Calibre 9012 incorporates a double gear train, a double remontoire and a peerless escapement. Its structure is all about depth, with bridges whose shapes, volumes and outlines are unique. Some are full and engraved, others are opeworked while all of them are hand-bevelled and finished according to exacting quality standards.
The movement's structure features a single crown which leads to a pair of separate gear trains. Each has its own barrel and its own remontoire. Wound every 10 seconds, the latter provide a constant force, a perfectly even torque to the Central Impulse Chronometer escapement.
The Central Impulse Chronometer escapement is a perfected, reliable and stable version of the double direct escapement. It comprises two anchor wheels working alternately, meshing with an altogether unique anchor.
Its contour, the number and shape of its rubies, its lift angles, its gentle push on the escapement wheels and balance wheel, all of these are completely unheard of. Doubling the whole gear train (and not just the escape wheels) lightens the load on the anchor, which only has to bear the last two wheels.
The system's inertia is thus reduced to a minimum, making its acceleration all the faster, resulting in exceptional performance. A final detail reveals the level of accomplishement of the Lederer Watches Central Impulse Chronometer's calibre 9012 : its two seconds' hands are constantly synchronised and in the same position, all through the power reserve.
Calibre 9012 is certified as a chronometre by the Besançon Observatory and COSC.