Jaquet Droz unveils two new variations of the Charming Bird, an extraordinary timepiece that was awarded the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève.
A creature seldom spotted, its song as rare as gold dust, the Charming Bird by Jaquet Droz is an exception in the world of watchmaking. It is the first wristwatch –and to date, the only– to feature a singing bird. Awarded the 2015 Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix (Grand Prix d’horlogerie de Genève) in the year of its launch, this automaton embodies the genius of Pierre Jaquet-Droz. The brand is today unveiling two new editions in red gold and white gold with an ivory Grand Feu enamel dial, in a Numerus Clausus of only eight pieces each.
An extraordinary mechanical feat developed over several years and powered by two patented mechanisms, the Charming Bird is the latest chapter in the story of the Art of Astonishment begun by Pierre Jaquet Droz 280 years ago. Combining his mechanical and watchmaking genius, the piece contemporizes the fascination of his celebrated automatons in a wristwatch. This scale of miniaturization demanded the most research for Jaquet Droz.
The timepiece features two separate movements: the first indicates the hours and minutes and is positioned at 12 o’clock on the ivory Grand Feu enamel dial; the second powers the automaton.
The automaton movement can run for 40 seconds before having to be wound. A Magnetic Speed Control regulates the animation and melody. This technology prevents contact between the parts to safeguard against friction and premature wear. It also minimizes noise from power distribution, thus freeing up the acoustic space to be filled with the sound of birdsong alone.
For the first time ever in a wristwatch, the melody is generated by air compression inside three sapphire crystal tubes. The compression is released intermittently through a whistle to produce a flowing refrain to which the bird moves in time. The winged creature honors the legacy of Pierre Jaquet-Droz who, almost three centuries ago, chose to depict birds in naturalist scenes on his snuffboxes and in his birdcages.
The Charming Bird figure is engraved and painted in the Jaquet Droz Ateliers d’Art. This masterpiece of miniaturization comes to life above the hand-engraved movement that drives it, which can be glimpsed through the sapphire crystal of the piece. The two latest variations of the Charming Bird, available in a choice of white gold or red gold, thrust the Art of Astonishment toward new creative horizons.
“Some watches tell time, some tell a story”
The Maison unveils the new radically innovative aesthetic of its masterpiece, whose tourbillon is revealed through meticulous geometry.
For the ninth consecutive time, Jaquet Droz is proud to donate a unique piece of its own creation, designed exclusively for Only Watch, a charity sale to benefit the Association Monégasque contre les Myopathies (Monegasque Association against Muscular Dystrophy), and featuring a degree of technical ambition and aesthetic never-before achieved: A Grande Seconde Skelet-One Tourbillon adorned with a plique-à-jour enamel dial.
Issued in eight pieces to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the founder Pierre Jaquet-Droz, the Bird Repeater, an automaton with a minute repeater, embodies the essence of the House. Its dial in white mother-of-pearl and black onyx features appliqués in 18K red gold. Multiple bird animations, eggs hatching and the river in the background breathe life into this creation. This weave of intricate animations, completely engraved and painted by hand, resonates with a minute repeater, which is housed at the heart of its 18K red gold case in 47mm, one of fine watchmaking's most virtuoso complications.
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