Corum Bubble 47 Central Tourbillon (AKA ‘Bubble Swoosh’): More Visibility For The Whirlwind
Corum’s Bubble is one of the most colorful protagonists in the contemporary watch scene.
Introduced at dawn of the new millennium, the Bubble made some surprising statements by challenging the traditions setting the tone for luxury timepieces during that period. For one, its case celebrated the beauty of roundness, measuring an unparalleled 44 mm in diameter at a time when big watches were scarce and a sapphire crystal eight millimeters thick was literally unheard of. For another, it featured a most unconventional and unorthodox design – one that was true to its name.
From the very beginning, the Bubble’s winning formula comprised some carefully selected ingredients: sheer size – one that was extended up to 52 mm over the course of the years – a towering sapphire crystal so high it distorts the dial and provides a unique magnifying effect, smooth rounded lines from the case and lugs to the crown to the hands, and, not to forget, a sophisticated mechanical heart (though quartz versions do exist).
The brainchild of the late Severin Wundermann, Corum’s previous owner, the Bubble was an instant hit, evolving into one of the most recognizable watches of the present day. Chiefly launched in various limited editions, the Bubble became sought after for lovers of the exceptional.
And it perfectly fits into the striking collection of this Swiss avant-garde brand founded in La Chaux-de-Fonds in 1955, one that has shown impressive prowess through some legendary timepieces such as the maritime-themed Admiral, the iconic Golden Bridge, a spectacular skeletonized watch with a baguette-shaped movement that was developed together with the independent watchmaker Vincent Calabrese, and the extra-thin Coin watch (see the latest iteration in Corum Hobo Coin Watch: Gothic Rock And Roll).
Despite being only 18 years old, today the Bubble is part of Corum’s Heritage collection in a total of 49 different executions. The evolution of this fun timepiece, whose spacious dial has often served as a canvas to project art en miniature on the wrist, is wonderfully diverse and quite unique. Learn more about its history in The Corum Bubble Is Back!
More recent examples of this attitude include the Bubbles by Juliette Jourdain embellished with artistic self-portraits of the Paris-based photographer.
Also noteworthy when it comes to the artistic side of the Bubble is the Big Bubble Magical 52 Anima, launched two years ago. A limited edition of 88 pieces, Corum partnered with DJ and composer Matteo Ceccarini to present a dial that displays a detailed eye with an iridescent effect. This watch never seems to stop watching you.
The Bubble also became friends with pirates, skulls, and Voodoo magicians and displayed its inner values through beautifully skeletonized and colorfully finished movements. There have been flags on the Bubble faces, unmistakable statements such as the word “Stop,” camouflage and snake patterns, pop-art designs . . . you name it.
My personal favorite so far has been the Bubble All-Black launched at Baselworld 2015. This limited edition featured dials designed in optical art using squares of varying sizes, so they appear to grow larger toward the center of the dial, a concept inspired by Hungarian-born French artist Victor Vasarely.
Naturally magnified by the distorting effect of the high sapphire crystal, these tiny graphic elements create a mesmerizing impression that makes it hard to rip your eyes away.
Purity and boldness: the Corum Bubble
Since this year, I have a new favorite Bubble, though: the Bubble 47 Central Tourbillon, also christened the Bubble Swoosh. As the name implies, it is the first Bubble to feature a centrally placed tourbillon.
And what a tourbillon! Its sophisticated movement construction spreads out over a large part of the dial to draw the highest possible amount of attention.
With the domed crystal magnifying the finely finished components one doesn’t need a watchmaker’s loupe to observe and admire the intricate mechanics so prominently staged. Also taking the spotlight is Corum’s key logo placed front and center in the middle of the tourbillon’s upper bridge.
Characteristic of the line, the Bubble 47 Central Tourbillon is not a modestly-sized timepiece: a whopping diameter of 47 mm makes for a strong statement on the wrist – like many other Bubbles before it. The 47 Central Tourbillon foregoes hands to retain an unobstructed view into tourbillon.
The display of hours and minutes have been moved to the dial periphery where they are indicated by two triangular pointers: black indicating minutes, colored for the hours. A pointer on the one-minute tourbillon cage indicates seconds.
Three different versions are available: black PVD-coated titanium with red gold on a rubber strap or natural titanium with blue color on a rubber strap or a mesh bracelet made of grade 5 titanium. A 100-meter water resistance rating is another rarity in a tourbillon wristwatch.
For more information, please visit www.corum-watches.com.
Quick Facts Corum Bubble 47 Central Tourbillon
Case: 47 x 19.6 mm, natural titanium or black PVD-coated titanium with red gold
Movement: automatic Caliber CO 406 with one-minute central tourbillon, 4Hz/28,800 vph frequency, power reserve 65 hours, twin spring barrels
Functions: hours, minutes, seconds
Price: $83,000 (black titanium with red gold); $76,500 (titanium); $77,000 (titanium on a Milanaise bracelet)
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Why I Bought It: The Corum Bubble Vintage
The Corum Bubble Is Back!
My Unique Corum Bubble From The “Customize Your Bubble Competition” Delivered
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Corum Hobo Coin Watch: Gothic Rock And Roll