Watch Curator '18


Watch Curator ’18
- Sun, Moon & Stars

THE GREAT CLOCK IN THE SKY

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October 2018


Watch Curator '18- Sun, Moon & Stars

The history of watchmaking – or rather of measuring time – began the day a human planted a stick in the sand and watched its shadow steadily move during the course of the solar day.

B

y night, they observed the moon and the planets as they pursued their circular orbit against a backdrop studded with stars. From these ever-repeated observations they derived laws and divided the day and night, month and year into equal parts.

But how to reproduce these movements of the heavens so as to be able to forecast their return and display them in real time? This is a long and rich story that began back in antiquity with the Antikythera Mechanism or the Tower of the Winds in Athens, an astronomical water clock dating from the 1st century BC. The story continues with the monumental astronomical clocks of Prague and Strasbourg, and the Astrarium of Giovanni Dondi, step by step right through to miniaturisation of ever more extreme proportions.

Some watches, among the most beautiful, remind us daily of these heavenly origins of time-keeping, born of observation of the sky. Each and every one of these watches, even a “simple” moon phase, is thus the direct descendent of a long history of millennia of observations, calculations and exceptional ingenuity that succeeded in transposing this grand ballet of Time into a mechanical movement, and reproducing it in such a diminutive form as to be wrapped around our wrist.

Some watches, among the most beautiful, remind us daily of these heavenly origins of time-keeping, born of observation of the sky.

VAN CLEEF & ARPELS MIDNIGHT PLANÉTARIUM POETIC COMPLICATION
VAN CLEEF & ARPELS MIDNIGHT PLANÉTARIUM POETIC COMPLICATION
This new Poetic Complication timepiece provides a miniature representation of the movement of six planets around the sun and their position at any given time. Earth and Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn – all visible from Earth with the naked eye – are set in motion thanks to a self-winding mechanical movement of great complexity: equipped with an exclusive module developed in partnership with the Maison Christiaan van der Klaauw, it contains 396 separate parts. The movement of each planet is true to its genuine length of orbit: it will take Saturn over 29 years to make a complete circuit of the dial, while Jupiter will take almost 12 years, Mars 687 days, Earth 365 days, Venus 224 days and Mercury 88 days. From 200,000 to 500,000$

DE BETHUNE DB25 STARRY VARIUS
DE BETHUNE DB25 STARRY VARIUS
Over the past few years, star-studded dials have become an integral part of the history of De Bethune. Personalised according to a specific geographical location and a given date, the gold pins are fitted one by one on the star-studded sky, thus making each model truly unique. The Milky Way pattern is then gilded using the traditional gold leaf technique and enhanced by laser beam micro milling. Today, for the first time, De Bethune offers a whole new take on the sky, framed by a slender case in polished grade 5 titanium measuring 8.8mm thick, 42mm in diameter and featuring perfectly integrated and openworked lugs. From 50,000 to 100,000$

MEISTERSINGER LUNASCOPE
MEISTERSINGER LUNASCOPE
With its single-handed watches, Meistersinger is following the grand tradition of mediaeval astronomical clocks which were frequently devoid of minute and second hands. This allows the Lunascope to offer a perfectly unobscured view of a large, realistic-looking moon against a starry backdrop. This precision moon-phase watch requires adjusting only once every 128 years. From 3,000 to 5,000$.

LOUIS MOINET SPACEWALKER
LOUIS MOINET SPACEWALKER
A poetic evocation of the splendour of the cosmos, the Spacewalker is dedicated to Alexey Leonov who, on 18 March 1965, became the first man to undertake a spacewalk. “I was heading out into the unknown; nobody in the world could tell me what I would find there. [...] The thing that struck me the most was the silence: utter silence such as I had never witnessed on Earth [...]. The sky was pitch black, yet at the same time it shone like the Sun... The Earth was small, light blue, and so achingly alone – our home, to be defended like a holy relic. The Earth was absolutely round. I believe I never knew what the word ‘round’ meant until I saw Earth from space.” The tourbillon portrays Leonov’s spaceship; the cosmonaut is represented by a diamond that orbits the tourbillon, and the depth of the cosmos by a backdrop in aventurine on which the starred sky and a nebula have been painted (using a technique which is a closely guarded secret). From 100,000 to 200,000$

JAQUET DROZ GRANDE SECONDE MOON BLACK ENAMEL
JAQUET DROZ GRANDE SECONDE MOON BLACK ENAMEL
The clean aesthetic of the Grande Seconde collection, with its figure-8 dial configuration, is rendered here in black grand feu enamel. The lower subsidiary dial is dominated by a realistic moon, engraved out of 22K gold and mounted on a black onyx disk that rotates. It is an astronomical moonphase, which means it requires correction only once every 122 years, and is driven by an in-house automatic calibre with a silicon balance spring. A red-tipped hand indicates the date on an 18K gold ring surrounding the moon phase, while another hand indicates seconds. The moon phase can be set using the corrector at 8 o’clock. From 20,000 to 50,000$

H. MOSER & CIE ENDEAVOUR PERPETUAL MOON CONCEPT
H. MOSER & CIE ENDEAVOUR PERPETUAL MOON CONCEPT
Neither logo nor indices – only the Moon, majestic, in its large subdial, surrounded by an interplanetary vacuum of an exceptionally deep black. This abyssal ultra-black is obtained thanks to Vantablack®, the darkest substance that exists, composed of carbon nanotubes vertically aligned with one another so as to absorb 99.965% of the light. The wheel train of the Endeavour Perpetual Moon Concept translates the orbital period of the moon – 29 days, 12 hours, 44 minutes and 2.9 seconds – so precisely that the resulting difference is no more than 0.23 seconds a day. Which adds up to one whole day after 1,027.3 years, making this model one of the most accurate on the market. From 20,000 to 50,000$

PARMIGIANI TONDA MÉTROPOLITAINE SÉLÈNE GALAXY
PARMIGIANI TONDA MÉTROPOLITAINE SÉLÈNE GALAXY
The Tonda Métropolitaine Sélène Galaxy shows an aventurine dial in midnight blue, the surface of which, peppered with fine fragments of gold, evokes the twinkling of stars in the night sky. At the heart of this constellation, the russet-coloured moon is magnified by its cratered surface, obtained by layering decals in a feat of complex craftsmanship. More than a simple depiction, this is a wrist-borne incarnation of the moon, which appears and disappears behind wisps of cloud at the heart of its star-studded constellation. The colour of the moon almost exactly matches that of the pink gold of the hands and the indices on the dial. From 10,000 to 20,000$

LANG & HEYNE MORITZ
LANG & HEYNE MORITZ
With its classical, symmetrical division of the dial, the Moritz visually combines all the calendar functions of a full calendar. The moon phase is displayed on the small seconds dial, and at 12 o’clock the declination angle is shown, a world premiere. The inclination of the axis of the Earth to the ecliptic of 23 degrees, and the orbiting of the Earth around the sun are the causes of the sun’s rays impinging sometimes more on the northern hemisphere, sometimes more on the southern hemisphere. For the first time, Lang & Heyne has made it possible to directly indicate the degree of the sun to the equator. The Earth disc, which oscillates with the seasons, is controlled by a program disc where the degree of the declination is accurately stored. From 50,000 to 100,000$

BLANCPAIN VILLERET QUANTIÈME COMPLET GMT
BLANCPAIN VILLERET QUANTIÈME COMPLET GMT
The week and month appear in windows in the traditional arrangement, while the date is indicated by a blued serpentine hand on a scale placed around the chapter ring. In addition, the GMT function presents the home time with a red-tipped hand on the inner dial, while local time is displayed with central hands pointing to the Roman numerals. Of course, the Moon phases are central, right in the middle of the dial. From 10,000 to 20,000$.

GLASHÜTTE ORIGINAL SENATOR EXCELLENCE PERPETUAL CALENDAR
GLASHÜTTE ORIGINAL SENATOR EXCELLENCE PERPETUAL CALENDAR
The cut-out dial of this perpetual calendar gives us fragmentary glimpses of the interacting discs of the date, month and day displayed in three generously dimensioned subdials. These share the space with a moon-phase, set against a deep blue sky, and a leap-year indicator. A highly contemporary scenography for a complication that ranks among the most noble in mechanical watchmaking. From 20,000 to 50,000$

RAYMOND WEIL MAESTRO MOON PHASE
RAYMOND WEIL MAESTRO MOON PHASE
Pure and simple, elegant and self-winding, the Maestro Moon Phase is a three-handed timepiece displaying, as its name suggests, the phases of the moon in a traditional window at 6 o’clock. A discreetly poetic, timeless timekeeper. From 1,000 to 3000$

All mentioned prices are indicative and correspond to price segment.

TO READ MORE
Europa Star Watch Curator ’18 is a selection of 147 watches classified under 13 specific trends:
Tourbillons - Globes - Sun, Moon & Stars - Purity - Open-worked - Skulls - Sport - Tough - New displays - Barocco - Vintage & Neo-vintage - Connected - Calibres.