One of the Youngest Watchmaker Remy Cools was in the Sunny Island of Singapore recently and we caught up with him. How does this up and coming watch maker incorporates the ideas of 18th and 19th century French watch making into his watches.
In Conversation: Remy Cools talks to us about his passion & what makes his watch tick
His name is Cools, Remy Cools. The 26 year old gentleman who has won the 2018 F.P. Journe Young Talent Award and after graduating from the Lycée Edgar Faure in Morteau, he went on to work for Greubel Forsey’s “Tradition Workshop” to work on the Hand Made 1 are amongst this accolades. He have recently released his second watch The Tourbillon Atelier and he was here to share with us about it.
Since this is the first time of us featuring you, what is your watch making philosophy? Chasing complications, chronometry or finishing?
RC: I think my watch making philosophy is chasing both finishing and chronometry as they come hand in hand. However should i have to put importance in either one, I would put chronometry first as a watch most important function is to tell time correctly. My watches are heavily inspired by the 18th and 19th century fresh watch making and marine chronometer.
Would you walk us though your new watch and how does it differ from your previous Souscription model?
RC: The latest Tourbillon Atelier took 1.5 years to dream up and there is no common parts with the previous Tourbillon Souscription. The watch’s movement is crafted mainly by CNC machine but finished in the traditional French watch making way. Currently we are making 12 watches a year and it will be a limited run of 36 watches for this model. It is encased in a 39mm platinum case that comes with either pink or yellow gold movement finishing with a 3mm domed sapphire glass with anti-reflective coat. (Writer’s note: Remy was wearing the yellow gold movement finishing during the interview)
The movement as mentioned is a totally brand new hand-wound movement with a 60 seconds tourbillon and 48 hours power reserve. The movement is named Caliber RCTA which features gold plated brass main plate and bridges, specific balance wheel with hand formed Breguet over coil. It beats at 18,000 vibrations per hour all 180 parts whether visible or not are hand finished with the same high quality finishing.
We understand that your current piece is your first permanent piece that you have released. Can we know what else is in the works in the future? What will be your direction for your atelier?
RC: The Atelier collection is the new step to create different things and have more creativity. What I will be looking forward to make is more 3 hands choronometer, perpetual calendar and perhaps even a chronograph. Currently, we are making 12 watches a year but I have a goal of reaching 30 – 50 pieces in a year however, I won’t want to make it like it is mass produced.
Since you are a watchmaker yourself, are you a collector? What kind of watches do you have in your collection and which is your favorite? What would be your endgame watch?
RC: I do not collect watches but I do collect Marine Chronometer, pocket watches and clock. What I find interesting is that it preserves the history of French watch making. Currently, two watches that I would buy is the Patek Philippe 3940 that was made in the 90s and the A.Lange and Sohne’s Datograph but only the first series.
Finally, moving away from watches, what are the hobbies that you have apart from being glued to the workbench? Would elements from your hobby be incorporated in your future watches? If yes, how so?
RC: I really like old cars before the second world war, wine and gastronomy. I think that amongst the few, wine making certainly resonates to me like watch making. I feel that wine making shares similar emotions to me when I am making watches. Personally, I am a fan of wines from the Burgundy region.
(Remy did show writer Stanley a photo that he have participated in what seems like Mille Miglia with his friend who owns a vintage Bugatti which looks very much like the Type 40)
With that, we conclude the first interview with Remy and we certainly look forward to seeing him soon!