Only Watch returns for its 10th edition in 2023. One of the most anticipated events in the horological calendar, the lots on offer this year once again showcase horological beauty, savoir-faire, creativity, and originality. Let’s take a look at some of the artisanal creations that will go under the hammer on 5 November in Geneva.
Rexhep Rexhepi Chronomètre Antimagnétique RRCA
For Only Watch 2023, Rexhep Rexhepi remains true to his vision with the Chronomètre Antimagnétique. A precision wristwatch bearing all of Rexhep Rexhepi’s hallmarks, the Chronomètre Antimagnétique is protected from magnetism by a Faraday cage surrounding the hand-finished movement. The Chronomètre Antimagnétique is both a tribute to historical antimagnetic chronometers and a practical timekeeper for modern life, where electronics containing powerful magnets are frequently encountered in everyday life.
The dial of the Chronomètre Antimagnétique is inspired by the “scientific” dials of historical chronometers. But its design is also a subtle nod to the watch’s purpose: the alternating blocks along the hour scale are an abstract representation of the opposite polarities of a magnetic field.
Like the great wristwatch chronometers that place function above form, the Chronomètre Antimagnétique features an antimagnetic stainless-steel case – one of the rare metal cases made by Jean-Pierre Hagmann’s workshop (JPH). The case back is a double construction, with an external screw-down case back that can be unscrewed by the wearer to reveal a second sapphire case back. This double case back construction protects the movement from magnetism, while allowing the beauty of the movement to be admired.
With its symmetry and perfect finish, the Chronomètre Antimagnétique calibre is instantly recognisable as a Rexhep Rexhepi movement.
Petermann Bédat and Auffret Paris Chronomètre d’Observatoire
Petermann Bédat and Auffret Paris collaborated for a unique three-hands watch chronometer for Only Watch 2023.
The movement takes Petermann Bédat’s design language by their swan-neck regulator system while Auffret Paris’s aesthetic codes are seen on the click system and the charbonnage at the surface of the bridges.
The dial is crafted from flame-whitened solid silver, engraved, and adorned with rose gold indexes. The hour and minute hands are made of rose gold, while the seconds hand is flame-blued steel. The stainless-steel case reflects Petermann Bédat’s visual identity.
The three-hand chronometer movement, which is based on a Zenith 135, was reimagined by the watchmakers, incorporating new aesthetics for the bridges. The collaboration extended to Fleury Manufacture, where the main components underwent precise machining.
This watch achieved exceptional performance at the chronometric test at the Besançon Observatory in the 30mm movement category, the observatory’s most coveted. A collaboration showcasing the best craftsmanship, design, and horological expertise.
Krayon Anywhere Only Watch 2023
What if you could tell the exact time of sunrise – or sunset – at a precise location chosen by the wearer, anywhere in the world? As an ode to nature, Krayon celebrates the natural elements through Anywhere Only Watch 2023 – made of titanium, a first for Krayon.
Krayon had previously explored the technique of miniature painting – where each colour is deposited by hand in tiny cells hollowed out of the metal – to create a work of incredible refinement for the 2021 edition of Only Watch. This time, Krayon again keeps the colour blue and explores the very intricate and precise technique of pointillism, as inspired by Théo van Rysselberghe’s painting.
The artist’s perceptiveness with minute brushstrokes, the paint deposited in small, skilful touches, giving almost imperceptible reliefs to this ‘canvas dial’, the rich palette of a multitude of shades of blue, the reflection of the sky on the waves, the light caressing their surface, creating contrasts to reveal a myriad of sparkles. In a masterfully controlled circular movement, the dial reveals an exceptional creation, honouring age-old techniques by calling on the rare specialists who still hold their secrets today.
The technical prowess of the movement and the artistic sensibility of the dial: this watch born of the vision of watch designer Rémi Maillat, founder of Krayon, keeps alive time-honoured Swiss traditions, while delighting connoisseurs and lovers of refinements that have become only too rare.
This piece was inspired from the Japanese art of Kintsugi, where broken objects are repaired with gold. A profoundly inspiring philosophy: instead of rejecting damaged objects, Kintsugi considers that their scars carry stories that deserve to be valued. The story of this piece thus transcends the mechanics and plunges into the realm of philosophical contemplation. With its exposed cracks, this timepiece bears witness to the passage of time. Like the tribulations of life that shape us, this unique creation pays tribute to the journey it has undertaken – a transformative odyssey where it has been intentionally broken, only to emerge even more precious and captivating. The impact marks on the rings and the movement are handmade by a craftsman watchmaker who achieves a hammered effect finish on the bridges, the plate, and the symbolic rings. The damaged parts are then gilded by hand with fine 22K gold.
For the full details on Only Watch 2023, visit the website.