New gérald genta capsule collection brings grace, glamour, and Gentissima

June 2024

New gérald genta capsule collection brings grace, glamour, and Gentissima

The latest collection from revived watchmaking icon Gérald Genta is a capsule line of three evocative watches inspired by the 1994 Oursin. It offers a preview of the brand’s in-house experimental design lab, Gentissima, which reinterprets the Maestro’s vision for a contemporary audience.


efore plunging into the world of gérald genta, it is necessary to understand three things. Firstly, the legendary designer of the same name was as prolific as he was creative, with thousands of sketches and concepts in his portfolio, some of which never saw the light of day. Secondly, a gérald genta watch is not for the faint of heart; it demands a bold partner with an adventurous spirit. Thirdly, gérald genta watchmaking is transcendental. It goes beyond the purely horological and is more precisely described as jewel for the wrist.

At the outermost frontiers of the gérald genta realm, a current of disobedience governs the tides. This transient domain is called Gentissima, the ultimate expression of liberated watchmaking design that takes an equal measure of audacity and abandon to navigate. Throughout his career, Genta reserved his most experimental work for his eponymous brand, indulging the full extent of his creative genius without restriction, an approach that characterises the landscape of Gentissima.

Emerging from these turbulent waves and marking the debut of the Gentissima design lab is the Oursin, a watch which origins can be found in 1994, at the confluence of passion and untrammeled self-expression.

Gérald Genta first sketched the Oursin — French for sea urchin — after a family vacation in Corsica. From that moment on, the oursin caught hold of Genta’s imagination. Its spiny, globular exteriors found horological form in a round case with deeply convex sides, studded with beads that gave the watch its startlingly unique aesthetic in all its variations. After having seen the first prototypes in 1994, Evelyne Genta fell in love with the Oursin and received a special version a year later. It remains her favorite watch to this day.

Today, the Oursin opens the Gentissima chapter at gérald genta, bringing to light one of the most personal and intimate chapters of the Genta story. The 2024 Oursin comes in three distinct models that reinterpret the Maestro’s vision at its most extravagant for a contemporary audience.

Like its 1994 forebear, the Gentissima Oursin is made for those who appreciate complexity, audacity and difference. Channeling the transgressive approach of its original creator, it represents the sublimation of unexpected objects into art.

In the words of Evelyne Genta, “The Oursin was among Gérald’s few creations that he was the proudest of; he would have loved those new versions! They are perfect evolutions of Gérald’s original design, retaining yet furthering the Oursin’s inimitable style.”

The gérald genta Gentissima Oursin is a 36.5mm creation, a powerfully versatile diameter that draws from the 1990s dual pursuit of structured androgyny and voluptuous allure. It plays with contrasts in color and texture, seducing the eye with its layered geometries and inviting touch with its tactile surfaces.

In all three models, a convex titanium case, designed and crafted at La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton, is studded with 223 beads, set in a radially expanding series of halos.Each of the decorative beads is individually threaded and screwed down, and comes in a contrasting material to the underlying titanium — white gold, rose gold and diamonds, or yellow gold. Its aesthetic polyvalence is enhanced with a bund strap option that imparts a striking note of sporty ruggedness.

The octagon, so strongly associated with the designs of Mr. Genta, appears in the centre of the dial via a reflection from the facetted crystal, traversed by the rounded baton hands that Genta aficionados will immediately recognise. The exterior surface of the sapphire crystal bears a taut, subtle dome that is contiguous with the camber of the surrounding case.

New gérald genta capsule collection brings grace, glamour, and Gentissima

The inner edge of the case bezel has been cut in a specific shape — the familiar octagon, combined with gently curved sides, echoing Genta’s gravitation towards more biophilic forms in the later part of his career.

Watchmaking Artistic Director Matthieu Hegi elaborates, “The Oursin is a fascinating model for a designer, with an almost infinite creative potential. The faceted crystal pays homage to Mr Genta’s passion for the octagon, which is also hidden in the shape of the case, appearing round at first glance. In fact, I chose a bead-blasted titanium case: light and dark, it highlights the beads with which it is dressed.”

Stark elegance characterises the anthracite-dial model of the new Oursin. This model is perhaps the most adaptable of the trio, with its tone-on-tone color palette, finely etched guilloché dial and polished round white-gold case beads. Its effortless ability to simultaneously blend in and stand out in a multitude of environments is ideal for the wearer with a chameleonic streak; it is ready to transform from discreet wrist companion to neo-baroque style statement in a moment.

A second model effects a glamorous reconciliation between the opalescence of its guilloché dial in pink mother of pearl and its light-shattering array of case beads in rose gold and diamonds. The soft blush hues of this model evoke a nuanced delicacy, while its sparkling extrusions hint at the radiant strength of its wearer. Of the trio of Gentissima Oursin models, the one with the pink mother-of-pearl dial has the closest affinity with nature, featuring two of the world’s most celebrated hard stone.

Third in the trio is a model whose extreme tonal contrasts disguise a polished and urbane charisma. Yellow-gold spiked beads project outwards from a matt black DLC-coated titanium case, setting up a tense visual equilibrium against the magnetic pull of the gravity-dark dial. Seemingly the most outspoken of the collection, this model is also the most aesthetically pure, eschewing diamonds and guillochage for a simplicity that speaks to the unarticulated yearning in modern life for Zen-like clarity.

At the heart of the Gentissima Oursin beats the automatic-winding GG-005 based on the Zenith Elite, a high-performance movement from the fabled Le Locle manufacture de la haute horlogerie. This iteration of the Elite has been customised for the Oursin, with the rotor reshaped in the form of an octagon, and bas-relief beads sculpted along the periphery of the mass. In a final touch of symmetry, the Elite was launched at a similar time as the historical Oursin — 1994.

The Gentissima Oursin premiered at an exclusive client event in the South of France to a rapturous reception, amid a celebration of everything defining the creative spirit of the Maestro Gérald Genta. Setting the tone for subsequent Gentissima collections, the Oursin will have a limited lifespan, allowing the design lab to explore different aspects of undiscovered Genta. Until the next Gentissima project, further varietals of the Gentissima Oursin are to be expected down the line as the collection continues to gestate and develop — a natural progression for the Gentissima ethos of unrestrained creativity.

New gérald genta capsule collection brings grace, glamour, and Gentissima



  • Material: Grade 5 titanium and white gold
  • Dimension: 36.5mm
  • Thickness:9.6mm
  • Water Resistance: 30m


  • Material - Finishing: Brass - Anthracite with guilloché 8 sides


  • Calibre GG-005: Automatic
  • Power Reserve - Frequency: 50h - 4Hz
  • Diameter: 25.6mm
  • Thickness: 3.65mm
  • Components - Jewels: 126 - 27


  • Lugs Width - Strap Material: 17.5mm – Anthracite calfskin leather

Price: 19K CHF (excluding taxes)

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