July 24, 2019
“Let’s do it properly”
The independent watchmaker has presented a new limited-edition Insight Micro-Rotor Black Titanium made using special crafts in addition to two breathtakingly customised versions of Logical One that put gem-setting and engraving techniques on display.
At Baselworld you have presented a new limited-edition Insight Micro-Rotor Black Titanium with frosted, oven-fired blue enamel dial, which I understand was quite difficult to produce.
Romain Gauthier: When making such dials, we employ the same hand-frosting technique that we use to decorate our bridges and main plates. When you hand-frost an oven-fired white enamel dial, it remains white while acquiring a matte effect. When you hand-frost an oven-fired black enamel dial, not only does it become matte, it also turns grey. Our challenge was to get the right blue.
And there are two breathtaking new versions of the Logical One, one set with baguette-cut diamonds and another with fascinating engraving on the movement.
I wanted to make something that we had never created before. Compared to, say, a decade ago, we are now better positioned to take the risks and meet the costs of creating such exceptional pieces with the right savoir-faire to draw on to make them a reality. Once you select the right diamonds, the baguette setting is relatively straightforward, though our design included some more complex elements like setting both the top and the flanks of the lugs.
The hand-engraved Logical One requires an even higher level of craftsmanship: it took 100 hours to create this intricate, byzantine-style geometric pattern on the main plate and one of the bridges. While both are exceptional pieces in their own right, these creations can also help collectors better imagine how far we can go in customising Logical One.
How has your positive outlook toward business – and the practice of making watches – helped make you so successful at what you do?
My ethos is: “If we’re going to do it, then let’s do it properly.” Passion and creativity alone won’t get us by. You need a sense of business too. Some people think that watchmaking is easy: you hire a movement constructor, create components, get a watchmaker to assemble them, and you’re all set. But you need to build something of substance that will last. It has taken the best part of 20 years to get to where we are now: devising a business plan, building a manufacture, creating a team, and putting a variety of savoir-faire in place. That healthy, organic growth – not lightning fast, but not too slow either – means we are in a great position to push on and be even more creative.
Manufacture Romain Gauthier SA
Hall & Stand
- 1.0 | L07