Swatch may well be cleaning up financially with their Moonswatch-Omega tributes right now, but Jaeger LeCoultre are creating a unique piece of art in the shape of the Hybris Artistica Calibre 945.
That is quite a name and not that catchy, but then this bespoke JLC watch is the plaything of millionaires. For starters it runs on sidereal time, not the standard 24 hour day we all know and live by. The dial is spinning, almost Antikythera in its execution. If you want to see where JLC might have sourced some inspiration then check out the Clickspring channel, where Chris has spent years painstakingly re-creating this fable ancient Greek chronicler of the stars and planets.
But what JLC have done goes way beyond a homage to an Orrery, or the Automata which was all the rage when Breguet was designing the first tourbillon.
The Cal 945 not only has a tourbillon spinning away as the heart of the movement, the whole thing rotates slowly, over a sidereal day. Then they added a soundtrack, with a chiming complication as well. Very trick, add some old school enamel painting on the planetary dial plate and voila, a masterpiece.
We have no idea on the price, but let’s assume it’s over £150K and there won’t be many of them made.
Verdict; fantastic to see JLC reach for the stars. The new clock looks amazing too. 99.9% of us can never afford this stuff, but then a Space X landing can inspire a thousand dreamers to become the next Elon. It’s all good.