The showcase features three experience areas, as well as watches from the 19th century to today.
It is Vacheron Constantin’s expertise in the decorative arts and its horological knowledge that has placed it in a league of its own. Since its founding in 1755, the manufacture has distinguished itself with timepieces whose beauty is expressed through aesthetics that are matched by unparalleled technical arrangement. The exhibition retraces these two inseparable links that have consistently characterised Vacheron Constantin’s approach to watchmaking.
The alliance between decorative arts and watchmaking techniques is illustrated through an exclusive curation of timepieces from the 19th century to today. The creations are also a demonstration of Vacheron Constantin’s relentless quest for absolute perfection in every detail.
The exhibition’s Experience Areas
The Anatomy of Beauty offers three sections. Called Experience Areas, the first, Our Heritage: A Legacy as Precious as Time, takes visitors on a journey into the watchmaking universe, immersing them into the manufacture’s exceptional history.
Artistic crafts including guilloché, enamelling, miniature painting, gem-setting and more, as well as the most accomplished technical mastery in the field of mechanical watchmaking constitute the very essence of Vacheron Constantin. The second section, The Anatomy of Beauty, shows how attention to detail is second nature at Vacheron Constantin and features the traditional hand-crafts and decorative techniques employed by master craftsmen to achieve the meticulous finishing and details found on each watch.
Finally, Science and Complications is an immersive journey that highlights five of Vacheron Constantin’s most important horological complications: the tourbillon, split-seconds chronograph, retrograde, perpetual calendar and minute-repeater.
The maison has curated 24 timepieces from its archives that encompass over 200 years of creations and exceptional technical excellence. Here are a few of the stand-out pieces you’ll find at the Experience Areas:
Pocket watch in finely chased yellow gold with amethysts and guilloché gold dial (1822)
An excellent illustration of the Rococo period, this shell style inspired both the Mannerist grottos of Tuscany in the 16th century, as well as Vacheron Constantin artisans. To create this relief decoration on a solid gold case, the master engraver used the pounced ornament technique, which involves carving out domes, beads and rosettes that are then smoothed down with a file. A subtle colour-gradient setting with amethysts adds depth to the sea urchin motifs.
Tour de l’lle (2005)
To celebrate the manufacture’s 250th anniversary, Vacheron Constantin presented this watch with 16 complications on a double-face display. Considered one of the world’s most complicated wristwatches, it was produced in a very small series of just seven pieces. Design-engineers and watchmakers took over 10,000 hours of research and development to create this horological masterpiece.
Métiers d’Art – Tribute to Great Civilisations (2022)
The Persian Empire of Darius the Great; the Golden Age of Ancient Egypt; the Hellenistic period of Ancient Greece; and the rise to power of Augustus, the first Roman emperor, are the historical anchor points of Vacheron Constantin’s new Metiers d’Art watch series. Part of the partnership with the Louvre initiated in 2019, the maison launched a series of four timepieces based on the museum’s ancient collections in Paris earlier this year.
Historiques 222 (2022)
An icon of the 1970s, the Historiques 222 is a contemporary reissue of the historic model. With its monobloc tonneau-shaped case topped with a grooved bezel, this timepiece with integrated strap retains its functional and sporty spirit with timeless elegance, thanks to the purity of its lines and finesse of its curvature. The case is decorated with a Maltese cross at 5 o’clock and has an open caseback, allowing the calibre to be admired in full view with an oscillating weight specially redesigned for this model.
Patrimony Minute Repeater Ultra-thin (2013)
Measuring a slim 8.1mm, this minute repeater watch in pink gold is the epitome of watchmaking elegance. Vacheron Constantin archived the unique, heavenly chimes of this timepiece, allowing the owner to recapture its original sound at any time. The manufacture’s technical excellence is also demonstrated by the silent ring mechanism, which ensures the gongs chime at regular intervals.
On from now until Nov 2 at level 4 of the ArtScience Museum, The Anatomy of Beauty by Vacheron Constantin is open to the public. Tickets must be pre-booked through the ArtScience Museum website.