Vacheron Constantin reveals their contribution to the Only Watch 2015 auction with a magnificent Métiers d’Art Mécaniques Ajourées timepiece.
The watch is the in-house caliber 4400 which is hand sculptured into a skeleton version and beautified with a grand feu enamelled ring in red. The open work is reminiscent of a large European railway station, symbolising the golden age of the industrial revolution. Open worked, skeleton watches are a speciality of VC, and they are usually done very beautifully and with good taste. This piece for Only Watch 2015 is no different.
The manually openworked Caliber 4400SQ takes hundreds of hours to achieve the balance between the airy aesthetic appeal while not compromising the structural rigidity of the plates which may affect timekeeping functions. New techniques are used to produce the skeletonizing, to create a 3 dimensional sculpural feel instead of only a flat 2 dimensional engraved structure. This is done by the artisans abandoning the use of the bocfil, a tiny hand saw to cut out the smooth surface to manipulate the bridges. And electing to use a method to carefully chase parts around the circumference so as to provide some sense of depth and volume to the bridges.
The watch bears the Poinçon de Genève, and will be part of the exclusive watches to be auctioned off by Phillips Auctioneers on November 7, 2015 in Geneva.