A tsuba is the hand guard of a traditional Japanese sword. “These eventually became elaborate pieces of art – far beyond their practical use,” says engraver Kees Engelbarts, whose fascination with Japanese handcrafts led him to use the Japanese metal alloying technique called mokume gane as the first one in watchmaking. It has now also led him to dedicate a watch to the tsuba theme, inspired in particular by a piece by Japanese swordsmith Hamano Masanobu.
Extraordinary engraver Kees Engelbarts loves his skeletonized watches as they do very much showcase his art form. “I wanted to make another kind of skeleton watch,” he says about his latest creation called Tourbillon Organic Skeleton. “Most skeleton watches are, as you know, very symmetric. My plan was to make a skeleton watch without a drawing or plan before starting, by just taking away material from the base plate and bridges that is not needed.”