The Metiers d’Art La Symbolique des Laques watch series demonstrates Vacheron Constantin’s respect for long tradition and watchmaking creativity. Since its birth in 1755, Vacheron Constantin has passed down the watchmaking craftsmanship, art excellence and craftsmanship excellence from generation to generation. This is not only a belief, but also an ultimate demand for superb technology and decorative craftsmanship.
Just like the Metiers d’Art Les Masques masterpiece set by Vacheron Constantin in collaboration with the Barbier-Mueller Museum in Geneva, the Metiers d’Art La Symbolique des Laques masterpiece set is a culture, art and high-end watch. perfect combination. Vacheron Constantin’s concept of watches as a bridge of cultural communication between countries As early as the 18th century, Francois Constantin began traveling around the country to spread Vacheron Constantin’s excellent watchmaking tradition. As a tribute to Vacheron Constantin’s traditional watchmaking spirit, is there any better gift than creating a masterpiece series that combines excellent watchmaking craftsmanship, long history and decorative craftsmanship?
As a process of exploring the perfect combination of production craftsmanship and creativity, the Metiers d’ Art La Symbolique des Laques watch tells the story of the Kyoto brand Zohiko and Vacheron Constantin. Established in 1661 in Kyoto is the longest-established Japanese traditional lacquer ware craft brand, and Vacheron Constantin, founded in 1755, is the world’s longest-established watchmaker. Opportunity coincides with this beautiful encounter, but only deep consensus and common values can establish a true connection. They also respect the tradition and make the two brands collaborate.
Xiang Yan’s artisans have inherited the blood of art and timeless creativity, and are well versed in traditional painting techniques. Maki, which means ‘spraying’, is one of the most complicated and ingenious techniques in painting, and there are only a handful of craftsmen who are proficient in this technique. In short, this technique is to spray a little gold or silver powder on the paint (usually black paint) that has not yet dried to create a beautiful decorative pattern. Lacquer comes from the sap of Rhus verniciflua. This tree is a species of poisonous root vine, born on the plateau of Central Asia or Tibet. It was once planted in a wide range, but today it is only born in southern China, South Korea, Vietnam, and Japan. The Maki-e craft has a long history in Japan, and it became more and more mature in the eighth to twelfth centuries, becoming an art form, and has become one of the main decorative crafts in the seventeenth century.
Maki painting process
Knowing the true meaning of time, Vacheron Constantin has always maintained the natural pace of creating watches. Adhering to the essence of the Metiers d’Art series, La Symbolique des Laques will launch watches with different themes within 3 years. The first set was launched in 2010. It is a set of 3 new watches, limited to 20 set.
This year’s ‘Kame’, ‘Kaeru’, and ‘Koi’ watches feature aquatic animals as the theme, and they are selected from representative animals in the Far East art tradition. Turtles, frogs, and carps, which symbolize longevity, good luck, and strength, respectively, show their unique symbolic meaning on the enamel dial. It takes at least 4 months to make each one. The ultra-thin 1003 movement perfectly combines the rich meaning of animals with the passage of time.
Symbolique des Laques
This legendary 18K gold movement is ruthenium-plated for smoother operation and complements the delicate dial, highlighting the dazzling brilliance of the dill painting process. The Geneva mark guarantees that the watch has the pure and excellent watchmaking technology in Geneva. The 1003 movement is always the reference standard for advanced watchmaking technology. It is the world’s thinnest manually-finished mechanical movement with a thickness of only 1.64 mm. And manufacturing is done by Vacheron Constantin. The sapphire crystals on both sides of the watch show excellent decorative craftsmanship, whether it is chamfering, drawing and engraving. The 18 gems are also crafted with extraordinary craftsmanship. In keeping with Japanese culture, the simple design of the round case reflects the unparalleled movement and two dill-painted dials, fully reflecting the Zen charm conveyed by the series.
Section 1: Turtle (Kame) and Lotus
‘Millennium Crane, Millennial Turtle’. In the minds of the Japanese, the turtle symbolizes longevity. The slow movement of the turtle just represents patience and authority, and the pattern of the octagonal turtle shell on the turtle’s back is also a symbol of good luck. Coupled with lotus, it gives people a sense of purity. In the traditional dill painting process, the shell of the animal is usually polished with a stone called momidasi, so that the light is reflected on the pattern and the precise beauty of the geometric figure can be presented. The eyes of the tortoise are inlaid with raden technology, and the leaves floating above the microwave are painted with taka sashimi, which makes the three-dimensional relief relief more beautiful.
Paragraph 2: Kaeru and Hydrangea
The frog has an admirable meaning in Asia and is regarded as a symbol of return in Japan. The Japanese name of the frog is kaeru, which is the same as ‘return’. The frog is famous for its loyalty, and it is said that no matter how far apart, the frog will always return to its original location. Frogs living near rivers or rice fields are always close to humans, so in societies based on agriculture and rice, frogs are naturally associated with prosperity. Whenever spring comes and everything recovers, the call of frogs is always heard. If a frog decides to live in one’s garden, it will protect the owner from danger and doom.
The frog, commensurate with hydrangea, is one of the most praised animals in the Far Eastern mythological tradition. It is a symbol of patience, just like the patience that the elephants and craftsmen need to draw lifelike frogs on the dial. Gold glittering eyes used the hirame process, first sprinkled with a layer of hirame powder, and then painted to deepen the color; using the momidashi technique to polish the stone with stones to capture the light for the frog’s body. Kakiwari technique is used to show different levels of lacquer art, mainly used to describe the texture details of leaves. The round pond, like a wave of water on the dial, sets off the tranquility and peace of this watch.
Section 3: Koi and waterfall
Carp is not only a symbol of persistence, it is also known for its courage and determination. Many Chinese and Japanese legends have praised the carp’s courage to go up, no matter how turbulent the current it is facing. In Japan, although carp usually lives in still water, it often represents the vibrancy and vitality of water. Carp is also a symbol of achievement and good luck. Carp is also found everywhere in Japan’s traditional May 5 (kodomo no hi) and Dragon Boat Festival (tanngo no sekku).
The combination of carp and waterfall symbolizes strength and will. On the dial, the carp elegantly shuttled through the turbulent water. The iro-katame technique is used to add gold or silver powder for dill painting to the paint, and then polished to contrast with the black background. The waterfall on the back was flowing slowly. The waterfall uses the technique of maki bokashi, and sprinkles gold powder on the painted surface to show a fuzzy figure.
These three watches are a unique interpretation of beauty and self-transcendence culture. The inheritance of Maki-e’s craftsmanship has lasted for hundreds of years, but it still retains its personality and precious characteristics. Skilled craftsmanship is crowned with an aura of symbolic meaning, firmly anchored in the depths of people’s memory, and rooted in the history of Japan and the Far East and in the world’s artistic heritage. Each of the portrayed graphics, whether animal, plant or mineral, tells a story. Once combined, these figures are transformed into various symbolic meanings, which trace back to ancient legends, literary works and poetry. This year, the theme of longevity is a traction line that strung these three new watches. What is even more symbolic is that this theme has witnessed the inheritance of world art and culture. This heritage has been carefully interpreted and interpreted in each of Vacheron Constantin’s masterpieces.