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Watchismo Times

THE WATCHISMO TIMES WATCH BLOG A reliquary of obscure timepieces from bygone eras as well as the cutting-edge watch designs of today.

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Time of your Life with Mr. Jones Watches

Summissus

If time is relative, Mr. Jones is your creepy Uncle Bob.
'Mr Jones Watches' are a line of seven conceptual yet functional timepieces designed and built by UK Critical Designer Crispin Jones. Created to explore new cultural expressions, technologies of timekeeping and how they relate to contemporary life. The creations are most hauntingly documented in each model's promo video. The 'Summissus' watch (above), symbolic of the Memento Mori, a philosophical expression preaching humility and the mortal timeframe is reduced to a mirror-finished dial (for self-awareness) and LCD display (for the real time).

Adsiduus

Auto-suggestive 'Adsiduus', with repetitive displays of positive or negative mantras with each time display, intended to produce personality change of the wearer.

Fallax

The 'Fallax' quoting Mr. Jones himself, "projects the wearer’s status to the people around them. Whilst many watches aim to project a sense of the wearer’s wealth and style, Fallax projects the wearer’s honesty. The watch contains a lie-detector which is attached via a pair of finger straps. If the watch detects a lie then the display flashes up the word “LIES”.

Fallax LED Display

Docilis

Made up of skeletal material, the 'Docilis' is intended to train the wearer to internalize the time with regular intervals of electric shocks.




'Dictatorship of Exact Time' Tian Harlan's Chromachron

Original 1973 model
(Time shown is approx half past one)

Tian Harlan, architect, engineer, artist develops the communication system 'Chromachron' (Chroma=Color ; Chronos=Time) in 1971. Timekeeping is approximated with a rotating disk revolving around a colored timezone by mechanical (wind-up) movement. Rotation is gauged by motion without demarcation of minutes or seconds. Each color represents an hour and as the cutaway passes through each - time is visualized, as he hoped, with less rigidity. Detailed in Pieter Doensen's book 'Watch - History of the Modern Wristwatch' as the 'anti-stress watch' freeing us from the 'dictatorship of exact time.'

1973-78 Models
(Left=little past 12 ; Right=9:20ish)

Originally conceived as the 'Colour-Time' clock sculpture at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Tian created over 100 variants of the watch (and clocks) through the eighties.


Eero Aarnio Proto Watch - by Sarpaneva

Eero Aarnio, most famous for creating the era-defining Ball Chair of the sixties along with Stepan Sarpaneva, a talented Finnish watchmaker created this one-of-a-kind 2001 'Proto' based upon Eero's original designs (pictured below). And today, they are teaming up to continue a more classic watch as well as further developing variations of this original Prototype for limited production. Will report more about that in 2007!

The case, handmade from brass, rhodium plated and curved to the wrist measuring 55mm long. A partially sheathed dial cylinder is asymmetrically placed off the case and tilted towards the viewer - powered by an automatic ETA 2892 movement.

Eero Aarnio's original designs

1966 'Ball' Chair

Eero himself in 1968 'Bubble' Chair


Stepan Sarpaneva's own 'Oiva' Design
(upcoming feature)



'God Save the Watch' - Grima for Pulsar & Omega 1969-1975

'God Save the Watch' - Grima for Pulsar & Omega 1969-1975

1969 Grima 'About Time' for Omega

Andrew Grima, modernist jeweler and holder of a 20 year Royal Warrant of Appointment to the Queen of England. Grima created some of the rarest watches of the sixties and seventies - Most were one-of-a-kind private commissions and all are made from precious metals or gemstones.

'God Save the Watch' - Grima for Pulsar & Omega 1969-1975

Custom 18k LED top buttons

'God Save the Watch' - Grima for Pulsar & Omega 1969-1975

Alternate version w/ side buttons

Pulsar Time Computer commissioned Grima in the mid-seventies to create a small variety of solid gold LED (light emitting diode) wristwatches. Only surfacing in recent years after a liquidation of a Middle East jeweler's estate. All are one of a kind and part of Simon Alexander and Bruce Wegmann's important collection.

'God Save the Watch' - Grima for Pulsar & Omega 1969-1975

18k Bracelet LED

'God Save the Watch' - Grima for Pulsar & Omega 1969-1975

Solid White Gold LED (115 grams)

'God Save the Watch' - Grima for Pulsar & Omega 1969-1975

Hammered Gold LED

'God Save the Watch' - Grima for Pulsar & Omega 1969-1975

The entire Grima LED collection

Grima collaborated with Omega in 1969 for the 'About Time' series. Designing 85 one-offs built by 64 craftsmen in one year. All featured watches under gemstones instead of glass and one was fitted with a 28-carat emerald crystal. Very little is known about the Grima models but I've been told by an Omega representative that a book is currently being written featuring many of the 'About Time' line.

'God Save the Watch' - Grima for Pulsar & Omega 1969-1975

1969 'Gondola' Watch
18k YG w/Smoky Quartz Crystal

'God Save the Watch' - Grima for Pulsar & Omega 1969-1975

1969 'Greenland' Watch
18k YG w/ irregularly shaped Tourmaline

Andrew Grima 1965

Many thanks to:
Grima Jewellery
LED Watches.net
Simon Alexander & Bruce Wegmann

Engine Block Watch - Parmigiani Fleurier 'Bugatti' Type 370 Sideview

sapphire crystals expose movement

Conceived as a true drivers watch with side-viewing while driving, the Parmigiani Fleurier 'Bugatti' is a companion timepiece for the super-exclusive French sports car company of the same name. Specifically the 'Veyron' - The fastest and most expensive street-legal sports car in the world.

But enough about the car...

The watch, only 150 made, taken directly from automotive technology, the Bugatti Type 370 "imposes it's aesthetic with parts arranged like a transversal engine." Mechanically wound by disc declutching tube spring, differential 10-day power reserve, mounted on silent block chassis, and choke with the dynamometric system. ...If you think I understand any of that, you're giving me far too much credit. MSP at only 200,000 Euros.







Seiko Concept Lab - 'Power Design Project' by Naoto Fukasawa

'Dish' Rotating Parabolic Antenna Watch

The SEIKO Power Design Project, a horological laboratory for 'concept watches' headed by famed product designer Naoto Fukasawa. Every year since 2002, his lab has introduced ideas pushing innovation in form and function. Noted on the PDP website - "*The SEIKO Power Design Project is purely for design study, and is not on the assumption of actual production."

'Crownless-Rimless' Watch

'Origami' Watch


'Ivory' (Digital watch in bracelet, Watch case appears solid)

'Drop' Water Droplet Clock


'Reflection Board' Reflector Watch


'Polygon' Radio Wave Receptor Watch

'Mt Otakadoya' Radio Antenna Watch

'Flex' Electronic Base Sheet Watch

'Airplane Window' Watch

'Transparent' Watch

'Shadow' Watch

'Obtuse Angle' Watch

'Extrusion' Watch

'Bottle' Watch

'Lens' Watch

'Heavy Beauty' Watch

'3D Cloth' Watch

Water 'Ripples' Watch

Optical Timelusion - Victor Vasarely Op-Art Watch

Optical Timelusion - Victor Vasarely Op-Art Watch

Victor Vasarely, Op-Art pioneer. Profoundly influenced by Bauhaus, constructivism, cubism, and surrealism he began his unmistakable geometric abstraction from the 1930's through his heyday of optical illusion of the sixties and seventies.

Late in his career, Bulova produced a series of wristwatches with Vasarely's artwork on the dial and engraved signature on the caseback. Very difficult to find, one of the more interesting models was the 'Four Squares' pictured above. A double-sided propeller style seconds hand added style.


Victor Vasarely's Oeuvre






Stop Pressuring Me! Manometro by Mazzuoli

I often see everyday objects and think they'd make a great looking wristwatch. Giuliano Mazzuoli did the same from his inspiration of an antique tire pressure gauge.

Manometro actually means 'gauge' in Italian. Measuring nearly 15mm thick and 45mm wide, it could likely be used as a spare tire itself.

His passion for automobiles will translate into his next timepiece, the Contagiri, inspired by the rev counter in the vintage sports car Alfa Romeo GTAM.


Original 'Manometro' Tire Pressure Gauge

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