Vacheron Constantin launches the next Metiers D'Art watch in the line of Chinese zodiac signs
November 30, 2016: Watchmaker Vacheron Constantin has enriched its Métiers d’Art: The Legend of the Chinese Zodiac with the sign of the rooster watch. The latter will take over from the monkey at the Chinese New Year on January 28, 2017. Bearing the Hallmark of Geneva, these two new creations, realised in twelve models each, combine the technical excellence of Caliber 2460 G4 with the beauty of artistic crafts.
China first introduced the paper-cutting technique known as Jianzhi, a popular art echoed in Swiss culture through its famous Scherenschnitt paper-cutting. This artistic approach, highlighted in the Métiers d’Art: The Legend of the Chinese zodiac, has been given a fresh interpretation thanks to the expertise of the master engravers and enamellers.
The foliage motif appearing on the dial and based on classic Chinese iconography is etched directly in the metal. The pattern remains semi-embedded and stands out from its gold base by a subtle stage-setting of variously accentuating reliefs creating a depth effect. This makes the vegetation appear to be floating over the dial.
Then, through Grand Feu enamelling, the enamel specialist enhances the intensity of the blue or bronze-toned dial. Achieving the necessary mastery of colour and of reactions to firing at temperatures between 800 and 900 degrees Celsius calls for an expertise that can only be acquired over long years of experience. The rooster, made of platinum or pink gold, is hand engraved and delicately applied to the dial centre.
The hands-free time display is achieved through four apertures showing the hours, minutes, days and dates. These indications – the first two of the dragging variety and the last two of the jumping type – proudly embody the longstanding savoir-faire of the Maison in designing and developing original displays. Clearly visible through the sapphire crystal back of the platinum or pink gold case, the 22-carat oscillating weight is adorned with a recurrent Maltese cross pattern.