Audemars Piguet http://www.audemarspiguet.com/en/latest Fri, 04 Apr 2014 15:04:00 +0000 en <![CDATA[Dan Holdsworth - "A Volume of Light"]]> http://www.audemarspiguet.com/en/latest/2014/04/04/dan-holdsworth-a-volume-of-light After legend athletes Lionel Messi and LeBron James describing the defining moment in their career, in this video, Dan describes what it is that fascinates him in the Vallée de Joux, birthplace of Audemars Piguet

Dan Holdswoth

Audemars Piguet is pleased to launch the fifth video of its intimate conversation series, this time talking to British photographer Dan Holdsworth. After legend athletes Lionel Messi and LeBron James describing the defining moment in their career, in this video, Dan describes what it is that fascinates him in the Vallée de Joux, birthplace of Audemars Piguet and how his photography relates to time itself.

A passion for remote locations and one obsession: the weather. These two elements define Dan Holdsworth’s work more than any other adjectives, so the selection of the Vallée de Joux, cradle of watchmaking and of Audemars Piguet as a location for his new set of shots, could not have been a better choice. "There's an interesting aspect to the nature of this landscape which, in a way, exported time around the world. I thought it was captivating, this element of technology and this very primal landscape, a powerful combination to make photographs” says Dan.

Also known as Little Siberia for its extreme weather conditions, the Vallée de Joux not only gave Dan the freedom to explore the interaction between time and light, but it also gave him the opportunity to explore a different sense of time, one that might differ from our perception and understanding. Working with long 3 hour exposures, both during daytime and at night, Dan’s work portrays the Vallée de Joux in all its glory and perfectly embodies Audemars Piguet’s philosophy:  “to break the rules, you must first master them”.

]]>
After legend athletes Lionel Messi and LeBron James describing the defining moment in their career, in this video, Dan describes what it is that fascinates him in the Vallée de Joux, birthplace of Audemars Piguet

Dan Holdswoth

Audemars Piguet is pleased to launch the fifth video of its intimate conversation series, this time talking to British photographer Dan Holdsworth. After legend athletes Lionel Messi and LeBron James describing the defining moment in their career, in this video, Dan describes what it is that fascinates him in the Vallée de Joux, birthplace of Audemars Piguet and how his photography relates to time itself.

A passion for remote locations and one obsession: the weather. These two elements define Dan Holdsworth’s work more than any other adjectives, so the selection of the Vallée de Joux, cradle of watchmaking and of Audemars Piguet as a location for his new set of shots, could not have been a better choice. "There's an interesting aspect to the nature of this landscape which, in a way, exported time around the world. I thought it was captivating, this element of technology and this very primal landscape, a powerful combination to make photographs” says Dan.

Also known as Little Siberia for its extreme weather conditions, the Vallée de Joux not only gave Dan the freedom to explore the interaction between time and light, but it also gave him the opportunity to explore a different sense of time, one that might differ from our perception and understanding. Working with long 3 hour exposures, both during daytime and at night, Dan’s work portrays the Vallée de Joux in all its glory and perfectly embodies Audemars Piguet’s philosophy:  “to break the rules, you must first master them”.

]]>
Fri, 04 Apr 2014 15:04:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Conquering new territory: Kolkoz build a swiss chalet for Miami]]> http://www.audemarspiguet.com/en/latest/2013/12/06/conquering-new-territory-kolkoz-build-a-swiss-chalet-for-miami For Kolkoz, as for many other artists of their generation, art is meant to be a tool to conquer new territories

Conquering new territory: Kolkoz build a swiss chalet for Miami

The Miami Marine Stadium, built in 1963, was for almost three decades the epicenter of one of the most spectacular motorized sports—powerboat racing. This grand stadium created a setting for drivers akin to Ben Hur on nitro, in a structure by the Cuban architect Hilario Candela. It was also used for concerts, boxing matches, and other sporting events before falling into disuse after Hurricane Andrew, in 1992. Now the roar of motors and hysterical crowds has given way to silence. The smooth surface originally conceived of as the aquatic equivalent of asphalt has slowly transformed into a ghostly sea, as peaceful as a lake.

In the center of this “lake” today is a structure that, at first sight—dare I say, on the surface—seems roundly out of place in this context: a chalet. The chalet, with its snow-covered roof, floats in the middle of the watery stage. It is a chalet composed not of wooden logs and a shingle roof in the traditional style, but of an inflatable structure. The closer we get, the more we realize that it resembles a synthetic image of a chalet (its faux-wood surface is designed to look like it has actual texture). From far away, the illusion of the picturesque chalet is still plausible. Viewed up close, however, it looks more like a video game.

Although the presence of a snow-covered chalet in Miami’s tropical waters is initially incongruous—even more so when we realize it is an inflatable reproduction of a chalet—does its artificiality really come as such a surprise? A brief glance at the history of the chalet reveals that its architecture is of uncertain origin, modest dimension, and rustic character. It escaped the alpine meadows in the mid-18th century for valley floors, lakeshores, and urban gardens (1).  The 19th century witnessed the rise of this type of construction: “Miniaturized or oversized, ordinary or eccentric, the chalet managed to impose itself as a set form of a particular kind of home. Naturalist writers saw it as the architectural expression of bourgeois individualism imprisoned by its own conformity…. [The chalet] relies on the idea that the individual makes his own happiness: to be at home everywhere and nowhere at the same time.” (2)  And as Georges Sand has reminded us, “Switzerland can be replicated anywhere it wished to be.”  (3)

In the mid-19th century, the popularity of the mobile chalet (i.e., one that can be grafted onto any landscape) as an architectural concept suddenly spiked with the invention of the band saw, in 1842, and during the second phase of industrialization, starting in 1848. The chalet’s mobility, nomadism, and practicality made it a key ingredient of cosmopolitan architecture, inspiring one journalist at the time to write: “This habitation is complete, it offers all the necessary commodities and seduces us with its cachet. Can’t you see that mobile homes are desirable in case of fire, epidemic, flood, and war? Quickly, you move your home away from the disaster and you can … say: I am bringing everything with me. Who knows? Mister Waaser [the mobile chalet’s inventor] who only saw … economic progress might also have brought us social progress: cosmopolitanism. The person who sets his tent wherever he wishes in the four corners of the world claims no nationality, and is instead a citizen of the world…. I foresee and welcome with open arms this peaceful revolution.”  

Chalets became increasingly popular at the end of the 19th century. By that time, the term chalet was employed interchangeably with villa, cabin, bungalow, and even lodge. Today, we see chalets in seaside resorts in Egypt and Kuwait, and in ski resorts in Lebanon. In North America, the chalet can describe any building that houses tourist infrastructures, such as ski resorts, country cottages, or vacation getaways.
 

Given its nomadic and worldly characteristics, it is not a stretch to say the chalet is associated with the idea of conquering new territory. Easy to assemble and disassemble, chalets went hand in hand with the expansion of the railroad in 19th-century Europe. They were also erected by pioneering explorers in the West. The artist duo Kolkoz—in partnership with Audemars Piguet and Perrotin Gallery—had the idea of “conquering new territories” in mind when they envisaged this inflatable chalet on the serene surface of the Miami Marine Stadium.  The artwork’s title, Curiosity, is an homage to the NASA Exploration Rover of the same name, which was deployed in 2012 to the planet Mars. Loaded with ultra-sophisticated materials, built to resist a Martian winter and to scale rocks and climb 45-degree slopes, NASA’s Curiosity can be considered the paragon of contemporary mobility, and even extra-terrestrial mobility.

Can a low-tech, earthly equivalent of this mobility champion exist? Especially one that allows for encounters with ordinary mortals? With this inflatable artwork, the Kolkoz duo simultaneously pay homage to the Martian pioneer craft and offer a possible answer to what mobility might mean in today’s world. Nowadays, blow-up structures are among the most common forms of mobile architecture. They adorn sporting centers, restaurants, banquet halls, and other temporary spaces. Light and easy to assemble and store, they function not unlike a plug-in that uses a host platform for the duration of a computer operation. An inflatable structure cannot be weighed down with details. It must have only the essentials. This is why Curiosity is a template of a chalet, a kind of computer-generated image. Totally functional—we can visit the inside, sit around a fake fire below a fake chimney—this simplified representation still fulfills our quintessential notion of a snow-covered chalet in the mountains.

The work evokes a traditional chalet’s vernacular architectural qualities but anchors its vocabulary in contemporary cultural influences: specifically Pop, which in the 1960s deemed the inflatable structure a fundamental architectural element. Video games, which profoundly influence the way we understand our reality, are another important reference. They have trained us to navigate multiple universes, where the real and fake intertwine seamlessly. In fact, the very function of video games is based on the idea of the fake: The player knows that he is entering a fake world and does so willingly, eager to believe in its existence, for the duration of the game, anyway. This existence is not only contingent, but it also enables us to delve into new territories created from multiple templates and computer-generated images, much like a Martian rover module conquering new worlds, albeit in lower resolution.

For Kolkoz, as for many other artists of their generation, art is meant to be a tool to conquer new territories. The territories beyond the Western frontier and on the planet Mars rely on the particular conviction that the real and the virtual together form one single unity, or rather that their unity isn’t even in question. Such a form, such a world, such a system, is unreal and real at the same time. Art today invites us to abandon selective logic (something being one thing or another, white or black) for an additive logic (something being one thing and another, being white and black). This shift enables us to navigate a world that never stops fragmenting into parallel universes, and to understand that, far from excluding one thing or another, we can construct a system of alternatives that opens up new horizons of territories not yet seized.

Marc-Olivier Wahler


(1)The following sentences are in large part inspired by Michel Vernes’s excellent study “Le chalet infidèle ou les dérives d’une architecture vertueuse et de son paysage de rêve,” in Revue d'histoire du XIXe siècle, Nr. 32, 2006.
(2)Michel Vernes, 117.
(3)Idem, 122.
(4)Auguste Chirac, quoted by Michel Vernes, Ibid, 130.
 

]]>
For Kolkoz, as for many other artists of their generation, art is meant to be a tool to conquer new territories

Conquering new territory: Kolkoz build a swiss chalet for Miami

The Miami Marine Stadium, built in 1963, was for almost three decades the epicenter of one of the most spectacular motorized sports—powerboat racing. This grand stadium created a setting for drivers akin to Ben Hur on nitro, in a structure by the Cuban architect Hilario Candela. It was also used for concerts, boxing matches, and other sporting events before falling into disuse after Hurricane Andrew, in 1992. Now the roar of motors and hysterical crowds has given way to silence. The smooth surface originally conceived of as the aquatic equivalent of asphalt has slowly transformed into a ghostly sea, as peaceful as a lake.

In the center of this “lake” today is a structure that, at first sight—dare I say, on the surface—seems roundly out of place in this context: a chalet. The chalet, with its snow-covered roof, floats in the middle of the watery stage. It is a chalet composed not of wooden logs and a shingle roof in the traditional style, but of an inflatable structure. The closer we get, the more we realize that it resembles a synthetic image of a chalet (its faux-wood surface is designed to look like it has actual texture). From far away, the illusion of the picturesque chalet is still plausible. Viewed up close, however, it looks more like a video game.

Although the presence of a snow-covered chalet in Miami’s tropical waters is initially incongruous—even more so when we realize it is an inflatable reproduction of a chalet—does its artificiality really come as such a surprise? A brief glance at the history of the chalet reveals that its architecture is of uncertain origin, modest dimension, and rustic character. It escaped the alpine meadows in the mid-18th century for valley floors, lakeshores, and urban gardens (1).  The 19th century witnessed the rise of this type of construction: “Miniaturized or oversized, ordinary or eccentric, the chalet managed to impose itself as a set form of a particular kind of home. Naturalist writers saw it as the architectural expression of bourgeois individualism imprisoned by its own conformity…. [The chalet] relies on the idea that the individual makes his own happiness: to be at home everywhere and nowhere at the same time.” (2)  And as Georges Sand has reminded us, “Switzerland can be replicated anywhere it wished to be.”  (3)

In the mid-19th century, the popularity of the mobile chalet (i.e., one that can be grafted onto any landscape) as an architectural concept suddenly spiked with the invention of the band saw, in 1842, and during the second phase of industrialization, starting in 1848. The chalet’s mobility, nomadism, and practicality made it a key ingredient of cosmopolitan architecture, inspiring one journalist at the time to write: “This habitation is complete, it offers all the necessary commodities and seduces us with its cachet. Can’t you see that mobile homes are desirable in case of fire, epidemic, flood, and war? Quickly, you move your home away from the disaster and you can … say: I am bringing everything with me. Who knows? Mister Waaser [the mobile chalet’s inventor] who only saw … economic progress might also have brought us social progress: cosmopolitanism. The person who sets his tent wherever he wishes in the four corners of the world claims no nationality, and is instead a citizen of the world…. I foresee and welcome with open arms this peaceful revolution.”  

Chalets became increasingly popular at the end of the 19th century. By that time, the term chalet was employed interchangeably with villa, cabin, bungalow, and even lodge. Today, we see chalets in seaside resorts in Egypt and Kuwait, and in ski resorts in Lebanon. In North America, the chalet can describe any building that houses tourist infrastructures, such as ski resorts, country cottages, or vacation getaways.
 

Given its nomadic and worldly characteristics, it is not a stretch to say the chalet is associated with the idea of conquering new territory. Easy to assemble and disassemble, chalets went hand in hand with the expansion of the railroad in 19th-century Europe. They were also erected by pioneering explorers in the West. The artist duo Kolkoz—in partnership with Audemars Piguet and Perrotin Gallery—had the idea of “conquering new territories” in mind when they envisaged this inflatable chalet on the serene surface of the Miami Marine Stadium.  The artwork’s title, Curiosity, is an homage to the NASA Exploration Rover of the same name, which was deployed in 2012 to the planet Mars. Loaded with ultra-sophisticated materials, built to resist a Martian winter and to scale rocks and climb 45-degree slopes, NASA’s Curiosity can be considered the paragon of contemporary mobility, and even extra-terrestrial mobility.

Can a low-tech, earthly equivalent of this mobility champion exist? Especially one that allows for encounters with ordinary mortals? With this inflatable artwork, the Kolkoz duo simultaneously pay homage to the Martian pioneer craft and offer a possible answer to what mobility might mean in today’s world. Nowadays, blow-up structures are among the most common forms of mobile architecture. They adorn sporting centers, restaurants, banquet halls, and other temporary spaces. Light and easy to assemble and store, they function not unlike a plug-in that uses a host platform for the duration of a computer operation. An inflatable structure cannot be weighed down with details. It must have only the essentials. This is why Curiosity is a template of a chalet, a kind of computer-generated image. Totally functional—we can visit the inside, sit around a fake fire below a fake chimney—this simplified representation still fulfills our quintessential notion of a snow-covered chalet in the mountains.

The work evokes a traditional chalet’s vernacular architectural qualities but anchors its vocabulary in contemporary cultural influences: specifically Pop, which in the 1960s deemed the inflatable structure a fundamental architectural element. Video games, which profoundly influence the way we understand our reality, are another important reference. They have trained us to navigate multiple universes, where the real and fake intertwine seamlessly. In fact, the very function of video games is based on the idea of the fake: The player knows that he is entering a fake world and does so willingly, eager to believe in its existence, for the duration of the game, anyway. This existence is not only contingent, but it also enables us to delve into new territories created from multiple templates and computer-generated images, much like a Martian rover module conquering new worlds, albeit in lower resolution.

For Kolkoz, as for many other artists of their generation, art is meant to be a tool to conquer new territories. The territories beyond the Western frontier and on the planet Mars rely on the particular conviction that the real and the virtual together form one single unity, or rather that their unity isn’t even in question. Such a form, such a world, such a system, is unreal and real at the same time. Art today invites us to abandon selective logic (something being one thing or another, white or black) for an additive logic (something being one thing and another, being white and black). This shift enables us to navigate a world that never stops fragmenting into parallel universes, and to understand that, far from excluding one thing or another, we can construct a system of alternatives that opens up new horizons of territories not yet seized.

Marc-Olivier Wahler


(1)The following sentences are in large part inspired by Michel Vernes’s excellent study “Le chalet infidèle ou les dérives d’une architecture vertueuse et de son paysage de rêve,” in Revue d'histoire du XIXe siècle, Nr. 32, 2006.
(2)Michel Vernes, 117.
(3)Idem, 122.
(4)Auguste Chirac, quoted by Michel Vernes, Ibid, 130.
 

]]>
Fri, 06 Dec 2013 09:52:00 +0000
<![CDATA[LeBron James - "High School Showdown"]]> http://www.audemarspiguet.com/en/latest/2013/10/16/lebron-james-talks-about-his-high-school-team-making-it-through-national-championship-in-2003 Audemars Piguet is pleased to launch the latest video of the intimate conversation series with its Ambassadors sharing defining moments in their careers.

Lebron James

After legend driver Michael Schumacher, world’s best footballer Lionel Messi and greatest cricket batsmen of all- time Sachin Tendulkar, this video features American basketball player LeBron James, NBA champion and World’s Most Valuable Player for the 2nd year running.

When his high school basketball team from Akron, Ohio, is about to face its final chance of making it through National Championship during their last season playing together, the only pressure LeBron James feels is the one he puts on himself: to win and not let down his team. Becoming the best in America was the team’s goal since 5th grade and all their efforts and late trainings were geared towards this objective. It paid off.

Ten years later, LeBron reflects on this particular time in his life: setting goals for the team and himself, playing and winning - not only thanks to talent but also intense training and willpower - is what shaped him into the man and the champion he has become today, perfectly embodying Audemars Piguet’s philosophy:  “to break the rules, you must first master them”. 

]]>
Audemars Piguet is pleased to launch the latest video of the intimate conversation series with its Ambassadors sharing defining moments in their careers.

Lebron James

After legend driver Michael Schumacher, world’s best footballer Lionel Messi and greatest cricket batsmen of all- time Sachin Tendulkar, this video features American basketball player LeBron James, NBA champion and World’s Most Valuable Player for the 2nd year running.

When his high school basketball team from Akron, Ohio, is about to face its final chance of making it through National Championship during their last season playing together, the only pressure LeBron James feels is the one he puts on himself: to win and not let down his team. Becoming the best in America was the team’s goal since 5th grade and all their efforts and late trainings were geared towards this objective. It paid off.

Ten years later, LeBron reflects on this particular time in his life: setting goals for the team and himself, playing and winning - not only thanks to talent but also intense training and willpower - is what shaped him into the man and the champion he has become today, perfectly embodying Audemars Piguet’s philosophy:  “to break the rules, you must first master them”. 

]]>
Wed, 16 Oct 2013 06:50:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Power and grace under pressure]]> http://www.audemarspiguet.com/en/latest/2013/09/27/power-and-grace-under-pressure The story of Lebron James’ career begins in Akron, ohio, where he showed the talents that would take him to the most elite level of the world of pro basketball at a very early age. His performance on the court has been a list of superlatives.

Lebron James

Straight from high school, he was selected by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2003 and set a record (for most points scored by a prep-to-pro player in his first game) right at the outset, scoring 25 points. He was to go on to become, while with the team, a two time All-Star Game MVP winner, and rapidly becoming known for his incredible combination of sheer physical power and remarkable agility. He has three Olympic medals to his credit as well – a bronze in 2004 and a gold in 2008 and 2012. His controversial move to the Miami’s basketball team in 2010 put him under enormous public scrutiny and pressure.

But ultimately, the experience proved transformative for LeBron by reinforcing the spirit of teamwork and positive experience on the court that had always been at the heart of his ability to play at the top of his game. The results speak for themselves – in 2012, he led the Miami team to their second NBA championship, and his first. It was a spectacular year – not only did he win his first NBA championship, he was also chosen as the NBA Finals MVP, and helped lead the American Olympic Basketball “Dream Team” to a gold medal – only the second time in the history of the game that a player has been an NBA Champion, MVP, and Olympic Gold Medalist.

The 18k pink gold case of the Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph LeBron James lends an air of luxurious richness while at the same time underscoring the powerful geometry of the case, and is set off by the cool, almost silken sheen of the titanium bezel. The rich combination of pink gold and grey metal is further underscored by the grey “Méga Tapisserie” dial, with its pink gold applied Arabic numerals and pink gold hands. A further discreet touch of luxury is the single diamond set into the chronograph pushpiece at two o’clock with both pushers, as well as the crown, made in black ceramic.

It’s an expression of the dual facets of LeBron James in horological form – Royal Oak Offshore fans might have thought a timepiece made in collaboration with one of the world’s most powerful athletes would be an exercise in pure testosterone, but the combination of subtle visual harmony with the bold lines of the Royal Oak Offshore is a true expression of both the physicality and sophistication of who LeBron James is.

]]>
The story of Lebron James’ career begins in Akron, ohio, where he showed the talents that would take him to the most elite level of the world of pro basketball at a very early age. His performance on the court has been a list of superlatives.

Lebron James

Straight from high school, he was selected by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2003 and set a record (for most points scored by a prep-to-pro player in his first game) right at the outset, scoring 25 points. He was to go on to become, while with the team, a two time All-Star Game MVP winner, and rapidly becoming known for his incredible combination of sheer physical power and remarkable agility. He has three Olympic medals to his credit as well – a bronze in 2004 and a gold in 2008 and 2012. His controversial move to the Miami’s basketball team in 2010 put him under enormous public scrutiny and pressure.

But ultimately, the experience proved transformative for LeBron by reinforcing the spirit of teamwork and positive experience on the court that had always been at the heart of his ability to play at the top of his game. The results speak for themselves – in 2012, he led the Miami team to their second NBA championship, and his first. It was a spectacular year – not only did he win his first NBA championship, he was also chosen as the NBA Finals MVP, and helped lead the American Olympic Basketball “Dream Team” to a gold medal – only the second time in the history of the game that a player has been an NBA Champion, MVP, and Olympic Gold Medalist.

The 18k pink gold case of the Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph LeBron James lends an air of luxurious richness while at the same time underscoring the powerful geometry of the case, and is set off by the cool, almost silken sheen of the titanium bezel. The rich combination of pink gold and grey metal is further underscored by the grey “Méga Tapisserie” dial, with its pink gold applied Arabic numerals and pink gold hands. A further discreet touch of luxury is the single diamond set into the chronograph pushpiece at two o’clock with both pushers, as well as the crown, made in black ceramic.

It’s an expression of the dual facets of LeBron James in horological form – Royal Oak Offshore fans might have thought a timepiece made in collaboration with one of the world’s most powerful athletes would be an exercise in pure testosterone, but the combination of subtle visual harmony with the bold lines of the Royal Oak Offshore is a true expression of both the physicality and sophistication of who LeBron James is.

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Fri, 27 Sep 2013 09:52:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Ladies First – since 1883]]> http://www.audemarspiguet.com/en/latest/2013/08/29/ladies-first-since-1883 Manufacturing timepieces dedicated to ladies, dates back Audemars Piguet’s foundation in 1875. The very first movement crafted exclusively for ladies in Le Brassus dates back to 1883.

Ladies First

The quest of timekeeping and miniaturisation not only inspired Audemars Piguet’s watchmakers but rapidly spread through the entire industry and took hold of creativity and skills, to the point it became an obsession and this for a good reason – ‘the greater the challenge, the better’. A philosophy that until today drives truly skilled craftsmen.

At the rise of the 20th century, creating accurate movements was not challenging enough anymore. Arranging parts in as little space as possible, making them keep time properly and adding complications of all styles became the new rule of the game.

In a time when timepieces were tucked deep in waistcoat pockets, the watchmakers excelled in concealing their marvels inside jewellery pieces reserved for ladies. Exclusive brooches, pendants, handbag watches and other treasures have survived the test of time and are now part of the Audemars Piguet heritage collection.

Producing several units of the same model and sorting them in collections was not in fashion yet. Hence most of these early timekeepers were designed as one-of-a-kind piece.

In 1927, Audemars Piguet presented what was then the smallest calibre in the world, designed and used in baguette timepieces. As the race for the tiniest calibre was still at its peak, it didn’t take long before a competitor broke the record in 1929. Audemars Piguet understood it was useless striving for size. Indeed, the smaller the calibre, the less advantage it brings to the wearer to the point where even legibility got seriously jeopardized. From then on, skills and knowledge were channelled on more prolific grounds.

Ladies have been a priority since inception of the company, something which remains true today. In a world where genders get mixed up more and more and men seem to gather all focus, Audemars Piguet will address ladies directly – there are exceptions to every rule.

]]>
Manufacturing timepieces dedicated to ladies, dates back Audemars Piguet’s foundation in 1875. The very first movement crafted exclusively for ladies in Le Brassus dates back to 1883.

Ladies First

The quest of timekeeping and miniaturisation not only inspired Audemars Piguet’s watchmakers but rapidly spread through the entire industry and took hold of creativity and skills, to the point it became an obsession and this for a good reason – ‘the greater the challenge, the better’. A philosophy that until today drives truly skilled craftsmen.

At the rise of the 20th century, creating accurate movements was not challenging enough anymore. Arranging parts in as little space as possible, making them keep time properly and adding complications of all styles became the new rule of the game.

In a time when timepieces were tucked deep in waistcoat pockets, the watchmakers excelled in concealing their marvels inside jewellery pieces reserved for ladies. Exclusive brooches, pendants, handbag watches and other treasures have survived the test of time and are now part of the Audemars Piguet heritage collection.

Producing several units of the same model and sorting them in collections was not in fashion yet. Hence most of these early timekeepers were designed as one-of-a-kind piece.

In 1927, Audemars Piguet presented what was then the smallest calibre in the world, designed and used in baguette timepieces. As the race for the tiniest calibre was still at its peak, it didn’t take long before a competitor broke the record in 1929. Audemars Piguet understood it was useless striving for size. Indeed, the smaller the calibre, the less advantage it brings to the wearer to the point where even legibility got seriously jeopardized. From then on, skills and knowledge were channelled on more prolific grounds.

Ladies have been a priority since inception of the company, something which remains true today. In a world where genders get mixed up more and more and men seem to gather all focus, Audemars Piguet will address ladies directly – there are exceptions to every rule.

]]>
Thu, 29 Aug 2013 09:09:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Sachin Tendulkar talks about winning the 2011 World Cup in India]]> http://www.audemarspiguet.com/en/latest/2013/07/16/audemars-piguet-ambassador-sachin-tendulkar-talks-about-winning-the-2011-world-cup-in-india Audemars Piguet is pleased to launch the fourth video in its series of intimate discussions with the brand’s Ambassadors where they talk about defining moments in their careers

Sachin Tendulkar

After tennis No 1 Novak Djokovic, legend driver Michael Schumacher and world’s best footballer Lionel Messi, this video features Indian cricket player Sachin Tendulkar, largely considered as one of the greatest cricketers of all time.

Back in 1983, when India won the World Cup, he admits he didn't know much about the game however it was this victory that ignited his passion for cricket. Under the close guidance of his father, Sachin took no shortcuts to success but worked extremely hard to make his dream of playing for India come true.

In 2011, twenty-two years after his debut and six attempts later, he accomplished his long cherished dream by winning the World Cup for India, in front of his own crowd. No wonder why Sachin Tendulkar so perfectly embodies Audemars Piguet philosophy “to break the rules, you must first master them”.

]]>
Audemars Piguet is pleased to launch the fourth video in its series of intimate discussions with the brand’s Ambassadors where they talk about defining moments in their careers

Sachin Tendulkar

After tennis No 1 Novak Djokovic, legend driver Michael Schumacher and world’s best footballer Lionel Messi, this video features Indian cricket player Sachin Tendulkar, largely considered as one of the greatest cricketers of all time.

Back in 1983, when India won the World Cup, he admits he didn't know much about the game however it was this victory that ignited his passion for cricket. Under the close guidance of his father, Sachin took no shortcuts to success but worked extremely hard to make his dream of playing for India come true.

In 2011, twenty-two years after his debut and six attempts later, he accomplished his long cherished dream by winning the World Cup for India, in front of his own crowd. No wonder why Sachin Tendulkar so perfectly embodies Audemars Piguet philosophy “to break the rules, you must first master them”.

]]>
Tue, 16 Jul 2013 11:56:00 +0000
<![CDATA[Audemars Piguet’s Haute Joaillerie watchmaking unveiled]]> http://www.audemarspiguet.com/en/latest/2013/06/24/haute-joaillerie-watchmaking-unveiled Audemars Piguet’s launch of an extraordinary Haute Joaillerie timepiece gives a fresh impetus to a speciality that has illuminated its heritage for 130 years.

Audemars Piguet’s Haute Joaillerie watchmaking unveiled

Although exercised in varying degrees of intensity over the decades, the creation of splendid feminine jewellery demonstrates skills and talents that the Manufacture has admirably perpetuated to the highest level.

Founded in in 1875 in Le Brassus in the Vallée de Joux, Audemars Piguet is an independent watchmaking brand that to this day has always been owned by descendants of its founders and still lives in the village of its birth. Its values of tradition and authenticity are inseparably bound up with the environment in which it has developed, as is demonstrated by its advertising campaign featuring wonderful images of local landscapes. In 2013, the valley blessed by Audemars Piguet is subtly evoked through a highly symbolic piece of jewellery that brings to mind not only the brand’s natural heritage, but also the feminine element that is so deeply rooted within it.

Audemars Piguet started creating calibres designed for ladies’ watches from 1883 onwards, less than ten years after its foundation, and has nurtured the art of jewellery throughout its history. The beginning of the 20th century, with its Belle Epoque and the Roaring Twenties, was a particularly rich period marked by a creativity that has been echoed ever since from generation to generation. Today, the plant-life themes of Art Nouveau suffuse a depiction of the Vallée de Joux, while the geometric lines of Art Deco endow the portrayal with an inimitable sense of purity and restraint. Different styles thus merge to compose a highly sophisticated contemporary creation.

This new Haute Joaillerie creation was born under the watchful eye of a woman, none other than the President of the Board, Jasmine Audemars, and stem from the fertile imagination of designer Julie Dicks under the guidance of Octavio Garcia, Audemars Piguet’s Chief Artistic Officer. In the brand’s employ for the past two years, Julie represents the only female presence in the in-house design department. Her particular sensitivity has resulted in a highly refined wristwatch with a 28.5 millimetre diameter, fitted with a bracelet featuring gradually decreasing foliage developed on fine, intersecting branches. It is a play on asymmetry, with reverse ramifications and a crown offset at 2 o’clock, associated with great subtlety expressed through alternating polished and gem-set surfaces. The stylised landscape on the dial evokes the Dent de Vaulion, a peak in the Jura overlooking the Lac de Joux.

To symbolise the serenity of nature lying dormant beneath the snow, the designer has chosen to combine the whiteness of mother-of-pearl, gold and diamonds. A sprinkling of blue sapphires adds a cool, fresh touch, while the exquisitely feminine and romantic spirit of this piece is accentuated by a flight of swallows heralding the imminent arrival of spring.

A crossroad of exceptional crafts
This contemporary masterpiece was designed, developed and created by Audemars Piguet. It represents the entire spectrum of crafts perpetuated internally and is the fruit of an interactive collaboration between the various craftsmen - designer, jeweller, gem-setter and engraver – as well as the watchmakers who produced the Manufacture’s mechanical movement.

The creation of the bracelet followed a particularly long and meticulous process. The manufacturing phase itself was preceded by an in-depth study of volumes and joints in order to obtain a perfect balance and maximum flexibility, with the aim of respecting the original design. The gold leaves, all different sizes, were individually hand-crafted, and partially cover delicate metal strands, assembled using the sophisticate Parisian mesh technique. The S shaped curves they trace considerably add to the complexity of the task. In order not to spoil the overall aesthetic appearance, the jeweller has designed an invisible clasp concealed at 6 o’clock beneath the case. In addition, as the bracelet can be completely taken apart, any adjustments can be easily made to ensure the closest possible fit on the owner’s wrist.

The precious stones, the purest diamonds (IF) and the best quality sapphires come in brilliant, baguette and marquise cuts. Some are tailor-made in situ to ensure that they suit their positioning, while others have imposed their unique character on the shaping of the structure. Snow, grain and closed setting result in harmonious reflections contrasting with rare subtlety, and a composition that is lit up right the way through to the case-back. Overall, this piece is enhanced with 440 diamonds, including 16 exceptional marquise-cut stones, totalling 10.99 carats, as well as 11 sapphires totalling 0.21 carat. 

The engraver calls upon the full measure of his skill to provide a deliberately light relief to the gold plate on the dial. Open-worked like lace, it forms the décor on a base covered in diamonds and pristine mother-of-pearl. The surface of the branches required the utmost attention due to their extreme finesse (0.3 to 0.4 millimetres thick), entailing the risk of destroyed the work by even the slightest inadvertent gesture. Leaves engraved on either side of the case form dynamic lines that extend the ramifications of the bracelet lugs. The movement is enlivened by the distinctive design of the ratchet-wheel. This round, mobile part enhanced by a dedicated engraving, attracts the eye and personalises the movement that may be admired through the sapphire case-back.

The mechanical movement housed in this Haute Joaillerie timepiece is hand-wound Calibre 3091, beating at a rate of 21,600 vibrations per hour and endowed with a 48-hour power reserve. Designed, developed and manufactured internally at the Manufacture Audemars Piguet, the timepiece is decorated in keeping with the finest watchmaking traditions. Its blued screws evoke the colour of the gold hands sweeping over the dial and the sapphires that enhance the radiance of the bracelet. A movement such as this instils exceptionally exclusive character into this sparkling creation, since jewellery watches driven by a mechanical calibre are few and far between.

Harmony rules in this sumptuous creation. The theme admirably reflects the identity of a family company that is deeply attached to its roots and the art of jewellery blends wonderfully with the art of watchmaking. For Audemars Piguet, it also heralds a renaissance in the realm of Haute Joaillerie, to the delight of women who are enthralled by its age-old expertise.

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Audemars Piguet’s launch of an extraordinary Haute Joaillerie timepiece gives a fresh impetus to a speciality that has illuminated its heritage for 130 years.

Audemars Piguet’s Haute Joaillerie watchmaking unveiled

Although exercised in varying degrees of intensity over the decades, the creation of splendid feminine jewellery demonstrates skills and talents that the Manufacture has admirably perpetuated to the highest level.

Founded in in 1875 in Le Brassus in the Vallée de Joux, Audemars Piguet is an independent watchmaking brand that to this day has always been owned by descendants of its founders and still lives in the village of its birth. Its values of tradition and authenticity are inseparably bound up with the environment in which it has developed, as is demonstrated by its advertising campaign featuring wonderful images of local landscapes. In 2013, the valley blessed by Audemars Piguet is subtly evoked through a highly symbolic piece of jewellery that brings to mind not only the brand’s natural heritage, but also the feminine element that is so deeply rooted within it.

Audemars Piguet started creating calibres designed for ladies’ watches from 1883 onwards, less than ten years after its foundation, and has nurtured the art of jewellery throughout its history. The beginning of the 20th century, with its Belle Epoque and the Roaring Twenties, was a particularly rich period marked by a creativity that has been echoed ever since from generation to generation. Today, the plant-life themes of Art Nouveau suffuse a depiction of the Vallée de Joux, while the geometric lines of Art Deco endow the portrayal with an inimitable sense of purity and restraint. Different styles thus merge to compose a highly sophisticated contemporary creation.

This new Haute Joaillerie creation was born under the watchful eye of a woman, none other than the President of the Board, Jasmine Audemars, and stem from the fertile imagination of designer Julie Dicks under the guidance of Octavio Garcia, Audemars Piguet’s Chief Artistic Officer. In the brand’s employ for the past two years, Julie represents the only female presence in the in-house design department. Her particular sensitivity has resulted in a highly refined wristwatch with a 28.5 millimetre diameter, fitted with a bracelet featuring gradually decreasing foliage developed on fine, intersecting branches. It is a play on asymmetry, with reverse ramifications and a crown offset at 2 o’clock, associated with great subtlety expressed through alternating polished and gem-set surfaces. The stylised landscape on the dial evokes the Dent de Vaulion, a peak in the Jura overlooking the Lac de Joux.

To symbolise the serenity of nature lying dormant beneath the snow, the designer has chosen to combine the whiteness of mother-of-pearl, gold and diamonds. A sprinkling of blue sapphires adds a cool, fresh touch, while the exquisitely feminine and romantic spirit of this piece is accentuated by a flight of swallows heralding the imminent arrival of spring.

A crossroad of exceptional crafts
This contemporary masterpiece was designed, developed and created by Audemars Piguet. It represents the entire spectrum of crafts perpetuated internally and is the fruit of an interactive collaboration between the various craftsmen - designer, jeweller, gem-setter and engraver – as well as the watchmakers who produced the Manufacture’s mechanical movement.

The creation of the bracelet followed a particularly long and meticulous process. The manufacturing phase itself was preceded by an in-depth study of volumes and joints in order to obtain a perfect balance and maximum flexibility, with the aim of respecting the original design. The gold leaves, all different sizes, were individually hand-crafted, and partially cover delicate metal strands, assembled using the sophisticate Parisian mesh technique. The S shaped curves they trace considerably add to the complexity of the task. In order not to spoil the overall aesthetic appearance, the jeweller has designed an invisible clasp concealed at 6 o’clock beneath the case. In addition, as the bracelet can be completely taken apart, any adjustments can be easily made to ensure the closest possible fit on the owner’s wrist.

The precious stones, the purest diamonds (IF) and the best quality sapphires come in brilliant, baguette and marquise cuts. Some are tailor-made in situ to ensure that they suit their positioning, while others have imposed their unique character on the shaping of the structure. Snow, grain and closed setting result in harmonious reflections contrasting with rare subtlety, and a composition that is lit up right the way through to the case-back. Overall, this piece is enhanced with 440 diamonds, including 16 exceptional marquise-cut stones, totalling 10.99 carats, as well as 11 sapphires totalling 0.21 carat. 

The engraver calls upon the full measure of his skill to provide a deliberately light relief to the gold plate on the dial. Open-worked like lace, it forms the décor on a base covered in diamonds and pristine mother-of-pearl. The surface of the branches required the utmost attention due to their extreme finesse (0.3 to 0.4 millimetres thick), entailing the risk of destroyed the work by even the slightest inadvertent gesture. Leaves engraved on either side of the case form dynamic lines that extend the ramifications of the bracelet lugs. The movement is enlivened by the distinctive design of the ratchet-wheel. This round, mobile part enhanced by a dedicated engraving, attracts the eye and personalises the movement that may be admired through the sapphire case-back.

The mechanical movement housed in this Haute Joaillerie timepiece is hand-wound Calibre 3091, beating at a rate of 21,600 vibrations per hour and endowed with a 48-hour power reserve. Designed, developed and manufactured internally at the Manufacture Audemars Piguet, the timepiece is decorated in keeping with the finest watchmaking traditions. Its blued screws evoke the colour of the gold hands sweeping over the dial and the sapphires that enhance the radiance of the bracelet. A movement such as this instils exceptionally exclusive character into this sparkling creation, since jewellery watches driven by a mechanical calibre are few and far between.

Harmony rules in this sumptuous creation. The theme admirably reflects the identity of a family company that is deeply attached to its roots and the art of jewellery blends wonderfully with the art of watchmaking. For Audemars Piguet, it also heralds a renaissance in the realm of Haute Joaillerie, to the delight of women who are enthralled by its age-old expertise.

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Mon, 24 Jun 2013 08:32:00 +0000