“It’s a tent,” Audemars Piguet CEO François-Henry Bennahmias jokingly explained during Art Basel at the opening of Robin Meier’s installation “Synchronicity,” pointing to the large, soft structure barely discernible behind him in the dark room. It did indeed look like a tent. A tent encompassing the most unusual type of art installation I had ever seen. Welcome to the world of synchronous firefly flashes and grasshopper chirps in the name of art.
There are an unusually large number of design awards, but not one of them holds a candle to the Red Dot, which is inarguably the most famous and important of them.
The Red Dot awards prizes for design in a multitude of categories, from refrigerators to lawn mowers and everything in between. These prizes are also awarded on many levels, e.g. Best of the Best, Honorable Mention, etc.
However, until the 2015 edition of the competition, there has never been a dedicated watch category.
Two of the watches in 2015 received the highest honor of Best of the Best: Horological Machine 6 Space Pirate by MB&F and the Apple Watch.
During twelve days at the end of May and the beginning of June 2015, Patek Philippe took over the trendy Saatchi Gallery in London for its wonderfully orchestrated Grand Exhibition. The exhibition was meticulously organized to be followed in an ordered sequence and featured the brand’s modern core ranges along with a host of vintage watches, including a number of royal examples. And even two watches belonging to queens of England.
In 1985, Svend Andersen and Vincent Calabrese founded the AHCI: Académie Horlogère des Créateurs Indépendants. The aim was to help independent watchmakers survive at a time when large brands and quartz watches were dominating the horological world. In 1985 very few people even knew that there was such a thing as independent watchmaking, as advertising and exhibitions (of which there were very few) were far too expensive for them to participate in. Today, 30 years later, the AHCI boasts 35 members and four candidates. Not bad for an organization I once described as “like herding cats.”
Audemars Piguet in collaboration with WENY (Watch Enthusiasts of New York) hosted an event in San Francisco that had it all: a watchmaking master class, in-depth talks with the brand’s historian while perusing a few vintage beauties, checking out some of the current collection, a whiskey tasting, and time spent with one of the brand’s ambassadors: the iconic golfer Nick Faldo.
Please join our Quill & Pad round table discussion on Baselworld 2015 as we discuss mood, trends, and timepieces we liked and didn’t like so much. The participants of this discussion are: Ian Skellern, Elizabeth Doerr, Boris Pjanic, Nancy Olson, Louis Nardin (editor-in-chief The Watches TV), and Benjamin Clymer (executive editor Hodinkee).
Welcome to the 2015 Quill & Pad Baselworld “awards,” in which we highlight a few of the watches and ancillary Baselworld potpourri that caught our eyes at the world’s largest watch exhibition. Please accept these citations in the way they are presented: generally tongue-in-cheek, sometimes serious, always fun!
In 2015, the AHCI celebrates thirty years of existence. This is a genuine milestone for any organization, and is really a grand, grand accomplishment for a loose grouping of more than 30 artisans of varying nationality, background, and level of accomplishment. Here we present five beautiful watches by AHCI members we saw at Baselworld.
The bright spotlights of Baselworld 2015 lit up a plethora of eye-catching watches of every shape, color, and complication. However, it was only when the lights were turned down or off that a few of the timepieces showed that their dark sides were actually quite bright. Here are a few of the best lume-outfitted watches from Baselworld 2015 from Patek Philippe, Romain Jerome, Chopard, Valbray, Bell & Ross, Bulgari, and Glashütte Original.
The dead beat seconds complication was developed so that the second hand on the wristwatch would move in the same way as a high-end, precious clock might. Dead beat seconds is a fairly rare addition to a watch movement in the modern age. In fact, it is almost never seen. Nevertheless, we found five watches outfitted with dead beat seconds at Baselworld 2015.