ew to the world of complicated watches, Bianchet is a creative contemporary Swiss watch brand founded on the modern reinterpretation of the Golden Ratio – 1.618 – in the world of fine watchmaking.
A defining feature, the sleek tonneau shape is echoed by two embedded lines of color that underscore the sense of balance the watch conveys. At the origin of the creative process, the Golden Ratio of 1.618 provides the mathematical basis for bringing into being a testament to beauty in watchmaking, where sophistication and simplicity play off each other.
Divine curves, perfect proportions, a creative space that brings out the aesthetic in the geometric – Bianchet lays the foundation for its inspiration through its faith in the purity of lines, its passion for contemporary design, its passion for architecture, coupled with a pure, intuitive sensibility nourished by Italian roots.
The Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork’s tonneau case measures 43 mm in width, 50 mm in height (length) and 13 mm in thickness. From the side, the top and bottom of the watch follow a curve. The superposition of these two lines, the colored seam, the thickness of the bezel, the play on heights – they are guided by the Fibonacci sequence. An organic arc that affords maximum wear comfort, perfectly espousing the wrist.
The case is available in titanium with multiple variations of hand finishing, each quite distinctive, even on the smallest surface areas. Nothing has been left out. Polishing, satin-finishing, and microblasting succeed each other from layer to layer, emphasizing the curves and their dramatic arc, marking the sharp edges of the bezel, all highlighted in bright red.
A carbon case, with the accent in blue, is also an option for the Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork. The composite material – light, hard and technical – has a special formulation: titanium powder has been added to the carbon fibers. Together, the two materials create a moiré effect that alternates between shiny and matte in a random pattern unique to each piece. In the hand, on the wrist, to the touch – the curvature and lightness of the Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork provide a feeling of completeness and harmony. It naturally flows from the Golden Ratio.
The Golden Ratio of 1.618, derived from the Fibonacci sequence, is the founding principle of the Bianchet aesthetic and the inspiration for naming the collection – B1.618. The Fibonacci sequence is an algorithm at work in the shape, growth and arrangement of multiple living creatures. It is intimately linked to the Golden Ratio and together they govern the relative dimensions of a Bianchet’s case and movement. Inspired by the graphic representation of the sequence – a spiral drawn with squares of increasing size as the sequence progresses – the two guide the forms of the bridges and the curves of the tonneau case.
Ultimately, the symbolic value of the Golden Ratio connects Bianchet to a search for harmony that reaches beyond the mere contours of the watch. The relationship between nature and culture, between geometry and biology, between the aesthetic and the metaphysical, that is at the core of Bianchet’s thinking.
Bianchet is about re-engineering a timepiece by applying the Golden Ratio to contemporary watchmaking. Indeed, breaking free from the classical and traditional culture with which the number has generally been associated, the Golden Ratio is applied to a totally modern design, with the materials, manufacturing techniques and performances of today. They all come together in the B1.618 collection.
Inside the Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork, another object of fascination, the Calibre B1.618. Watch enthusiasts since they can remember, Emmanuelle and Rodolfo Festa Bianchet freely admit their fascination for this complication. Its ability to overcome the effects of gravity by rotating is founded on a principle in which the mathematics determine the physics and come ever so close to aesthetics, a truth of the same magnitude as that of the Fibonacci sequence.
Skeletonized, the calibre is made entirely of black DLC titanium. It was designed and developed and is now manufactured by Bianchet in La Chaux-de-Fonds, in the heart of the Swiss watchmaking industry. The process of making a Bianchet is focused as much on quality as on technical excellence, the main objective being to obtain a perfect balance between form and function. The Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork has a power reserve of 105 hours.
Yet this calibre is not satisfied with just a noble complication. The execution, too, captures the imagination with graphic force and true originality. Conceived from the outset as a skeletonized movement, the Calibre B1.618 is all about a sensation of plumbing untold depths, a feeling only accentuated by the curves, whose radii, progression and interlacing are also derived from the Fibonacci sequence.
Instead of following a traditional design that builds on concentric circles, which in effect only reflects the requirements of the mechanics, Bianchet has decided to make the Golden Ratio an integral part of its creation. As if a mathematical object in motion, the spiraling Fibonacci curves are found at the heart of the movement, evoking the double-mirroring of a mise en abyme, less a stylistic effect, and more a measure of the young brand’s depth.
By definition sporty-chic, the Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork is water-resistant to 50 meters (5 ATM) in the titanium version, 30 meters for the carbon version and features a crown guard. As a sign of the confidence Bianchet places in its manufacturing process, the watch is guaranteed for five years. The figure reflects a physical quality of the movement: its components are made of Grade 5 titanium, including the bridges of the tourbillon cage. The material’s low weight and high rigidity further enhance the calibre’s reliability.
With the metal used for the components and case, the Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork in titanium weighs in at less than 55 grams. The carbon version weighs 33 grams without the bracelet. In other words, the Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork is practically imperceptible when worn and that feeling of harmony between watch and wearer is only underscored by the watch’s natural curvature.