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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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Agam's 80s Kinetic Op-art Watches for Movado

Agam's 80s Kinetic Op-art Watches for MovadoA Kinetic & Op-Art pioneer, Yaacov Agam created this 1980's limited edition watch series for the Movado Time Museum Collection. The only other artist to produce a watch for Movado was Andy Warhol with his 'Times/5'.

Featuring anthracite colored steel straps, a mystery dial of multi-colored glass discs rotating circles/semi-circles overlaying dotted hands for time. Sold at auction in 2000 for $10,925.

Yaacov Agam Watch --> Link

Agam's 80s Kinetic Op-art Watches for MovadoA geometric center of rotating shapes and color for these two watches and pocket watch by Agam. Once an hour, when the minute triangle aligns the box of the hour hand, the two designs also align. Antiquorum --> Link

Related posts;
Op-art artist timepieces by Victor Vasarely --> Link
Andy Warhol's Times/5 watch for Movado --> Link
Tian Harlan's Chromachron --> Link


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1970s Panasonic See-thru Clock Radio


The first of a few features about transparent mystery dial timepieces, both wristwatch and clock oriented. I recently bought this oddball vintage Panasonic (model #RC-6500C) clock-radio on Ebay and was just blown away with it's design -- Appearing to be floating in space, the hour, minutes, seconds and alarm are split into four layered clear disks spinning in a porthole for both clock and radio. Each disk is a gear in itself with the contacts of the outer teeth & notches hidden by the case. The concept has also been miniaturized for some spectacular watches, stay tuned...

See my short video below showing off the clock's transparency. Once I find someone to repair the lamp feature, the displays will again glow blue for night viewing.







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Watchismo's Timewarp for QP Magazine - Vintage Sideview Displays


My new column, 'Watchismo's Timewarp' for British QP Magazine (Issue #23) is now available.

For the series premiere, I write about one of my favorite species, the Sideview display like the 1958 Patek Philippe 'Cobra' prototype below. Its radical use of digital and graphic rollers was likely too ahead of its time. Originally featured --> Link



Others featured in the article;

1970 Amida Digitrend

1974 Jaz Derby Swissonic

1976 Benrus Pop-up LED

Giving You the Finger - Rolex & Jaeger LeCoultre Ring Watches


I wonder if it were socially acceptable to wear a watch on every appendage, would I..? Well, I'd likely start with one of these vintage 1950's ring watches. Very rare finger timepieces by LeCoultre and Rolex.

Above is a platinum & diamond set LeCoultre 'Duo-Plan' with an impossibly small dial & movement. Top-hinged for winding and setting of the watch.

Below is the 18k Rolex Precision with engine turned conical cover.

Now, when you give someone the finger, be considerate, tell them what time you want them to fuck off.




First Bite of the Hammerhead - Urwerk 201 Watch Release


Urwerk's 200 collection has just been unveiled! Stealthily solid and exposed like Wonder Woman's invisible jet, the 'Hammerhead 201' is a feat of micro-mechanics my mind is having trouble processing. Announcing shocking new features like the telescopic minute hands that extend and retract from the now iconic 'Urwerkian' hour display of three orbiting and rotating cubical hour satellites. Really difficult to grasp the complexity and beauty unless you can see it function live. If they ever make a video or animation available, I'll be sure to post it here.

Basically, time is displayed by the three-hour cubes with four numbers printed on each. They spin normally and are tripped to rotate as they line up with the 'erection' of the minute hand that grows from the bottom cube pointing to the corresponding minutes that arc at the bottom of the dial. As mentioned in a previous entry, the Hammerhead 201 is a blend of the Urwerk 103 Series and the Opus V project.

Other features include power reserve meter, day/night indicator, and a special highlight is the Control Board on the back which includes an oil change indicator notifying when servicing is needed (three years of usage), fine-tuning screw, and the worlds first 100 Year Plus indicator, an odometer keeping track of the total time of usage.

Again, another watch I'd love make out with.


Control Board



Orbiting Hour Satellites & Telescopic Minute Hands


Astronomic Watches by Christiaan van der Klaauw


Literally out of this world, the classic-cased timepieces by Dutch watchmaker Christian van der Klauuw are astronomically complicated. Inconceivably measuring everything from the position of the planets, the constellations, worldwide sunrises, sunsets, solar and lunar eclipses. Each model is handmade by Christiaan himself resulting in a very limited edition of each. Originally an astronomical clockmaker, the watches were developed after he miniaturized his own highly complicated movements.


Self-lauded as the smallest planetarium in the world, the obviously named 'Planetarium' features a heliocentric revolution of the planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn). 


His most recent invention introduced at the 2006 Basel World, the 'Venus' features a very animated dial with separately rotating Earth & Moon and Venus orbiting the Sun amidst the Constellations.


Frighteningly complex, the 'Astrolibium' measures celestial bodies and constellations. 

Astrolibium Guide


A variation of the Astrolibium, the 'Mondial CK1' is customized to where you are located on the globe and features a sunrise/sunset gauge for the rest of the planet. 



One of Christiaan van der Klaauw's original Astronomical Clocks which ultimately led to his miniaturized mechanical universe.

Vintage Radiator Grille Wristwatches


In my continuing and failing quest to find watches that look like mufflers, I present two vintage timepieces in the form of radiator grilles. Many watches have been featuring dashboard-esque displays but these are the only ones I've ever found featuring engine cooling as timetelling design.

Above - The 1960's Swiss Buèche-Girod in 18k gold for Volvo.

Below - 1970's Guyot & Cie Rolls Royce watch in 18k gold with concealed dial behind grille.






The limited edition (only 50 made) Audi Grille chronograph by designer Stephen Webster


And the 1920's Bugatti sports car inspired model (actual grille below) featured in QP's premiere issue.



Watches With Balls - Mido & Gruen Mystery Dials


These two watches have some serious balls.

Vintage mystery dial watches often have inventive displays of timekeeping as do the 1940's Mido (above) and 1965 Gruen (below) which both feature floating balls for hands. Attached to disks, the balls spin in a typical rotation but the solid 14k solid gold Gruen has a very unusual minute hook-hand that clears the little pearl hour orb with each passing.




Agam's 80s Kinetic Op-art Watches for Movado1970s Panasonic See-thru Clock RadioWatchismo's Timewarp for QP Magazine - Vintage Sideview DisplaysUrwerk Visit by RevolutionTwo Unique Swiss Vintage Mondia Moonstone & Parade WatchesGiving You the Finger - Rolex & Jaeger LeCoultre Ring WatchesFirst Bite of the Hammerhead - Urwerk 201 Watch ReleaseAstronomic Watches by Christiaan van der KlaauwVintage Radiator Grille WristwatchesWatches With Balls - Mido & Gruen Mystery Dials

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