THE CHOICE OF PURITY
By Lauriane Zonco
The venerable house of Jaquet Droz celebrates the 280th anniversary of a spirit that still succeeds in refinement and daring. An anniversary that chooses to highlight the first iconic model of the House, namely the Grande Seconde “Tribute”, here reinterpreted in yellow gold, a first for the brand.
This exclusive model, produced in a limited edition of 88 pieces, manages to transcend the aesthetics of this cult timepiece, and is distinguished by an individual serial number enamelled in red on the dial. As usual and brilliantly bringing together innovation and pure design styling, Jaquet Droz here unites silicon components – a material highly prized for its strength and anti-magnetic properties – and refined elements in yellow gold. We find the distinctive codes of this flagship model of the house, Ivory Grand Feu enamel dial, hand guilloche and two engraved stars, symbol of the brands founder.
The founder whose stamp is still so vivid, is Pierre Jaquet-Droz, born in 1721 on a small farm in La Chaux-de-Fonds and passionate about watchmaking from childhood. At just 17 years old, he began designing grandfather clocks that caught the attention of a wealthy and demanding clientele, even as far as the main royal courts of Europe. Jaquet-Droz father and son will even go as far as conquering the Far East and winning over Emperor Qianlong, making the watch brand the first to be imported into the Forbidden City.
They finally settled in Geneva where they founded one of the first clockmaking manufacturers in the city. They sold watches of great luxury, automata and singing birds all over the world, the name of the house remains synonymous today with watchmaking practiced as genuine art.
The Grande Seconde, born in 1784, will definitely seal this technical and aesthetic mastery. Become a timeless icon, it has declined over the years in demanding and exclusive models, that can even be customised by appealing to the know-how of the Ateliers d’Art Jaquet Droz. Or how to wear a certain idea of the art of watchmaking and elegance on your wrist.