Today I don’t want to talk about one specific watch (though the Girard-Perregaux Tri-Axial Tourbillon gets special attention). Instead I want to discuss a whole class of mechanisms that made me cross the line from watch fan to so-called “watch idiot savant” (affectionately abbreviated as WIS): the multi-axis tourbillon.
Continuing our series on tourbillons from Baselworld 2014, here are a few from Breguet, Chopard, Ulysse Nardin, Grönefeld and Kari Voutilainen.
This week we present a video-rich roundup of the recent news so pour yourself a large glass, get yourself comfortable, scroll down and enjoy.
The week’s review includes: Urwerk’s new UR-105M, both Vacheron Constantin and IWC supporting film and the arts at the Tribeca Film Festival, Girard-Perregaux’s new blue Sea Hawk, Jaeger-LeCoultre honoring Charlie Chaplin, a quick look at the best on the net, plus a few well-known horological figures giving their Baselworld Top-5 for The Watches TV.
This month, Martin Braun will celebrate half a century on this planet. Though he did not expressly say he created the Tourbillon Astronomique for any particular reason, I almost suspect he was giving himself a huge birthday gift to celebrate this life milestone.
Wild watches get ever wilder and ever more numerous and like any addict, we need more and more just to reach the same horological high. One of the first avant garde brands that started us all on this exhilarating ride isn’t really playing the same game at all: Urwerk. In an era when new models appear to be designed as much, if not more, for shock-and-awe as they are for time keeping, the UR-105M paradoxically looks both cutting-edge-modern and reassuringly familiar.
“Art”, what is it? If we allow that horology at its finest can indeed be art, then I have no problem accepting Romain Gauthier’s Logical one as art. While beauty may be in the eye of the beholder (and mine sees beauty in Logical one), there is no denying Romain Gauthier’s fertile imagination in reinventing the chain and fusee, eliminating the ubiquitous winding crown, improving the mainspring barrel and adding a few diamonds!
Parallax is a fascinating phenomenon that has real-world applications, including the amazing ability of humans to use their two eyes and parallax shift to judge depth of field. You can reach out and grab that doorknob because of science. For this reason and more I absolutely love the latest creation to come out of the Grönefelds’ workshop, their aptly named Parallax Tourbillon.
While Baselworld 2014 was not a particularly big year for tourbillons, they were still an important element in the collections of most brands and a few of them were truly exceptional. Here are just a few of the tourbillons that passed in front of my lens at Baselworld 2014.
With the horological storm that is Baselworld slowing calming down, we thought this might be a quiet news week; however, it turned out to be busy with news from Rolex, Richard Mille, Audemars Piguet, Zenith, Montblanc, Antiquorum, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Hublot, Digital Luxury Group and F.P. Journe.
The most common choice for classic dress watches has to be gold, but have you ever wondered where that gold originally came from? And by “originally” I’m not referring to a gold mine on earth but the original source of the gold even before it arrived on our planet. Spoiler alert: it involves an explosion, a very big explosion!