At the occasion of its 280th anniversary, Jaquet Droz invites you to discover the magic of Time through its exceptional exhibition “Story of the Unique” from 1 to 30 June 2018 at Les Ambassadeurs Zurich.
Jaquet Droz celebrates 280 years of watchmaking audacity, avant-garde aesthetics, innovative spirit and culture of excellence that have been ingrained in the brand’s DNA from the outset. Extraordinary creations that combine design, materials and craftsmanship with the most incredible refinements of mechanical watchmaking have seduced since the 18th century.
To wear a Jaquet Droz watch is to embody the story of visionary genius Pierre Jaquet-Droz and his nature-inspired universe lives on in the desire to cherish this spirit of audacity, aesthetics and excellence, which today tells its own unique story in the world of luxury and fi ne watchmaking. It's also about telling a second story, unique to each of these exceptional timepieces, whose meticulously assembled miniaturized mechanisms breathe life into dials steeped in poetry.
Inspired by the pocket watch created by Pierre Jaquet-Droz in 1784, the Grande Seconde has become a timeless icon, adapted over the course of the years into the most exclusive expressions. On a single dial, two counters form a figure 8, the symbol of infinity and eternity, as the hours and minutes, off-centered at 12 o’clock, embrace the seconds situated at 6 o’clock, playing with Arabic and Roman numerals for a new way of viewing Time.
To perpetuate the ancestral tradition of fi ne decoration that Pierre Jaquet-Droz established, by steering a course for it through time and modernized it – such is the challenge that the watchmaking firm’s artisans must meet. The arts of painting, engraving, sculpting, paillonné and even enameling are worked in miniature and integrated into timepieces that thus become genuine works of art.
At the time the encyclopedia was being written, Pierre Jaquet-Droz was striving to make a genuine challenge of his trade by copying life itself in the form of mechanical androids with fluid movements, such as The Writer, The Musician and The Draughtsman. Today, as in the 18th century, performance and virtuosity are at home in the miniaturization of automatons inspired by nature, creating veritable miniature theater sets that spring to life on the wrist in a dreamlike journey.
The Philosophy of the Unique
For nearly three centuries, Jaquet Droz has placed time under the banner of astonishment, excellence and constantly renewed creativity. In the 18th century, the Jaquet-Droz family were pioneers in the art of luxury decoration. They supported an entire generation of craftsmen through their work. Enameled cases embellished with paillons, painting, and sculpted and engraved ornamentation contributed enormously to their success and their fame. Pocket watches, urns, snuffboxes and cages for mechanical singing birds – all these masterpieces were elaborately decorated.
“Some watches tell time, some tell a story”
From June 2nd to July 1st 2018
Monday - Friday 9.30 am - 7 pm
Saturday 9.30 – 5pm
BAHNHOFSTRASSE 64, 8001 ZÜRICH, TEL. +41 44 227 17 17
A warmed up stage, a drum kit, a few guitars and a harmonica: “It’s only rock’n’roll!” Today, Jaquet Droz unveils the first out of the 23 unique timepieces to retrace the world of the Rolling Stones through motion. Beside the arm of a record player that hovers over a platinum album replica (the power reserve), a scene depicts their signature instruments in miniature paintings and gold thread. The external disc rotates up to 8 consecutive times for 30 seconds and is adorned with the albums that the collector will choose for his unique timepiece. At 9 o'clock, the iconic tongue beats rhythmically, from left to right and from top to bottom. “And I like it!”
After three years of work, Jaquet Droz and John Howe have developed an Art Watch dedicated to emotion, wonder and fantasy. Draped in gold and rare stones, their dragon has a record 9 distinct animations. Inside a 43 mm case, the piece is entirely handmade and can be customized almost without limit by the client. Thanks to a Studio in the heart of the Jaquet Droz head quarter, clients will be offered an immersive phygital experience that will allow them to witness the live creation of their timepieces. There is no series to be announced, only unique pieces.
The “Effinger” clock dated from 1783 and signed Jaquet-Droz, has been sold at CHF 256,000.-, which is more than three times the starting bid of CHF 70,000.-, during the Koller auction on March the 31st 2022.
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