SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements

from the press release

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements
  The new Métiers d’Arts Fabuleux Ornements collection is an irresistible invitation to embark on a journey celebrating the ornamental beauties of the world drawn from the decorative arts of several cultures. Inspired by dreams of faraway places and by the open-minded approach to the world consistently cultivated by Vacheron Constantin, it unveils four ladies’ models born of the art of openworking and a combination of artistic crafts. Ten different master artisans have taken turns in providing talented reinterpretations of Ottoman architecture, Chinese embroidery, Indian manuscripts and French lacework. These exquisitely feminine creations are equipped with an ethereal hand-engraved calibre echoing the precious dial ornamentation and enshrining a subtle blend of inner and outer beauty.
  Journey to the heart of technical and precious ornamentation   One of the most fascinating facets of a woman’s nature is her ability to reinvent herself while remaining keenly attentive to the world around her and its manifold cultures. Vacheron Constantin has repeatedly exercised boundless creative freedom through incredible creations dedicated to women. These naturally include wristwatches, but prior to that there were richly ornamented pocket watches worn on sautoir necklaces, suspended from a chain in chatelaine mode, pinned to a dress or hidden inside a brooch. All of them call upon the imagination nurtured by the artisans of the Manufacture – master-watchmakers as well as engravers, enamellers, guillocheurs, jewellers and gem-setters – in order to meet the expectations of an ever more discerning clientele.   The Métiers d’Art Fabuleux Ornements watches invite women to rediscover the beauty of the ornaments of the world, beating to the rhythm of a precious and technical watch calibre. China and its ancient embroideries, India and its colourfully illustrated manuscripts, the Ottoman empire and its architecture, France and its lacework: all are sources of inspiration conveying their art through gossamer-light compositions exalted by the artisans of the Manufacture. Guillochage, Grand Feu enamel, diamonds, pearls and mother-of-pearl, as well as engraving, glyptics and gemstone cloisonné effects: traditional arts at the crossroads between various cultures spring to life, in step with the oscillations of an exquisitely airy hand-engraved calibre.   A precious openworked calibre: when a mechanism becomes an adornment as fine as ornaments themselves.   “No external grace is complete if it is not vivified by inner beauty”. These words written by Victor Hugo are perfectly echoed in the Métiers d’Art Fabuleux Ornements collection, in which the openworked and engraved calibre makes a perfect match for the dial ornamentation. A masterful demonstration of Vacheron Constantin’s expertise in the field of decoration, the openworking of the ultra-slim Calibre 1003 in 18K gold – a mere 1.64 mm thin – transform it into an incredible lacework of engraved wheel trains. The feat consists in withdrawing a maximum of material without affecting the vital parts that ensure the smooth running of the watch. Setting the final touch to the work, all the bridges are hand-drawn with a file, while every single part is patiently hand-chamfered, decorated and fashioned in traditional manner to form an ideally feather-light composition. The finesse of the front-facing décor is precise to the nearest tenth of a millimetre, while on the back Vacheron Constantin has opted for an exclusively chamfered and hand-drawn finish that preserves a pure, restrained appearance.

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements


SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements


  Métiers d’Art Fabuleux Ornements – India manuscript Grand Feu champlevé enamelling and hand engraving

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements
  Framed by a pink gold case topped by a diamond-set bezel, ten vibrant enamel colours blossom on the dial. These shimmering shades form oriental-inspired flowers blooming against a blue sky. The master-enameller has expressed the vivacity and richness of Indian illustrations through a profusion of intense enamels surrounding the openworked calibre, like the floral motifs decorating the margins of ancient oriental writings. The contours of its décor are first traced using the champlevé technique to create cavities separated by thin gold partitions in order to apply the enamels. These ten different hues represent a daunting challenge in terms of mastering the successive firings, a process that calls for a true alchemist’s skill. The foliage, which is meticulously hand-engraved after enamelling, heightens the radiance of the watch and echoes the engraving of the openworked calibre. This is one of the most delicate stages, since even the slightest slip of the hand can jeopardise the entire creation.
SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements


SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements


  Métiers d’Art Fabuleux Ornements – Ottoman architecture Chamfering, mother-of-pearl, and half-pearl beads
SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements

  The ethereal calibre is magnificently reflected by the chamfered pink gold moucharaby (wooden lattice) motif formed by the dial and of which every edge is delicately bevelled by hand. Daintily perched on a natural white mother-of-pearl base, the gold gridwork studded with half-pearl beads echoes the majesty of the scrolling patterns in Middle Eastern architecture. The meticulously executed decoration on the rings, known as milgrain and featuring strings of tiny bead shapes coined along the edges, add to the magic of the workmanship. The enchanted world of the Arabian nights continues in the arabesques of the calibre, also embellished with engravings.

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements
  SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements


SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements



  Métiers d’Art Fabuleux Ornements – French lacework Guillochage, Grand Feu enamelling and gem-setting

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements
  A luminous white gold lacework adorns the translucent hand-guilloché Grand Feu enamelled dial. This artfully polished spun lace pattern is reminiscent of the grand tradition of French-style embroideries, an ancestral art ingrained in the national culture. An infinite sense of lightness pervades the scene, evoking the patient and dextrous craftsmanship performed with the crochet needle or the spindle. The base of the gold dial is clad in a guilloché motif lending subtle depth to the transparent enamel.

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements  


Métiers d’Art Fabuleux Ornements – Chinese embroidery Glyptics, gemstone cloisonné work and engraving
SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements
  Crafted in pink gold according to the cloisonné technique, the dial is carpeted with flowers in rubies, cuprites and garnets. Like the silk thread Chinese embroideries embellished with precious fabrics, the graceful elegance of the stones cut and sculpted according to the glyptic art are adorned with finely engraved gold leaves and pistils. Concern for detail taken to extremes, as epitomised in the veins of the plants and the rounded shape of the petals, endow this ornamentation with a fascinating depth effect. The particularly delicate ruby engraving is a true challenge. The pink opals are individually cut and lapped to form a tapestry of stones on a dial prepared for this purpose with barely 0.5 mm thin white gold partitions. The impressive finesse of the work accomplished by the master lapidaries and engravers pays a vibrant tribute to the traditional art of embroidery exercised for millennia in China.

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements
SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements

SIHH 2014:Metiers d'Art Fabuleux Ornements
 
By far the most gorgeous ladies watches. At least IMHO. Are
01/19/2014 - 11:50
These available individually or as a set?
Individually
01/19/2014 - 12:07
,
What is the price range of these pieces?
01/19/2014 - 14:44
...
Re: What is the price range of these pieces?
01/20/2014 - 21:35
Probably ranges from "oh my giddy Aunt" veering wildly towards "you have got to be