VANGARDE, the independent French horology brand specialized in exclusive hand-crafted watches unveils their first model Tempo Théorie, a limited edition timepiece that displays the time in an unconventional way.
It took two years of planning, countless designs, prototypes, trials, and tests for Vangarde to present its first watch: the Tempo Théorie, a limited edition with just eighty-eight numbered copies.The original creative idea behind this design was to transform the conventional way of displaying the time, with the hand pointing on a layered scale, in a complex and poetic architectural display.
The hour and minute hands overlap, intersect and are juxtaposed, while the sub-dial hands complete the kinetic design making the overall effect even more complex. All these combinations form a polymorphic structure that is like a moving work of art, set in motion by the mechanical energy of a spring. Its stunning visual effect sparks one’s curiosity, while remaining perfectly easy to read.
With this first design, Vangarde wanted to create a watch that makes you want to keep looking again and again, going beyond a mere time-piece by allowing you to witness an artistic composition created by the passage of time.
Developing the hands was a long and difficult process, because what was required was not a static design, like ordinary hands, but a kinetic design which would take into account their rotational movement, so that they would align in the most evocative way possible through the hundreds of permutations created by the design.
The supeluminova was inserted inside of the hands in a different configuration to make it easier to distinguish between hours and minutes.
Once the design of the hands was finally complete, the next challenging task was to create a worthy ‘backdrop’ for them. A complex, asymmetric skeleton dial was designed to fit the background formed by the calibre V1 and the kinetic patterns produced by the hands. The positioning of the sub-dials breaks up the typical chronograph layout to produce a more balanced appearance. The development of the printed elements constituted a graphic design project in itself, with the subtle positioning of figures and text to produce a visually sublime overall effect. The dials are laser cut, galvanised, then finished in black with white print.
Starting from an ETA Valjoux 7750 ébauche, chosen for its reliability and ease of maintenance, Vangarde developed the Calibre V1.
The Calibre V1 has a bespoke skeletonised tri-compax back-plate and bridge, allowing the minute dial to be positioned at “3” (originally at “12” on the 7750). All critical components such as the balance wheel, balance spring, spring etc have been replaced by state-of-the-art components (certified chronometer). The movement is assembled with the greatest care, adjusted in five positions. The surfaces are hand-finished with Geneva stripes, circular graining, and straight graining.
The gears and the rotor have been redesigned to provide a unique view of the escapement and the self-winding system. A specially designed black ruthenium galvanising process produces the modern look that is expected in high-end contemporary chronographs.
The finely polished finish gives a ‘carbon’ look to the skeleton bridges, perfectly blending tradition and modernity, while the rotor is decorated with Geneva stripes. The steel mechanical parts and the escape wheel are finished with straight graining. The dial, too, is finished with Geneva waves, rhodium-plated wheels and straight graining, and all screws are finely polished.
And finally the whole is housed in a 316 L stainless steel case shaped from a solid piece, made up of a single casing with precision machined housing (no housing ring) with a bezel and a screwed base, both polished and fitted with O rings. The sapphire crystals have been given state of the art anti-reflection treatment in order to minimise unwanted reflection. The caseband has a brushed, satinised surface which contrasts beautifully with the crown and the push buttons which are polished and decorated in ‘Clous de Paris’ style.
The bracelet is made in France in the way traditionally associated with master leather craftsmen. Made from carefully selected Louisiana alligator skin, it is hand assembled and sewn, then fixed to the casing with stainless steel tubular fixings. So that it can be easily and safely attached the closing mechanism consists of a butterfly buckle with two push buttons with brushed, polished finishes decorated in ‘Clou de Paris’ style.
Integrated automatic chronograph, chronometer grade. based on mechanical ébauches ETA Valjoux 7750.
Glucydur balance wheel.
Anachron balance spring.
Nivaflex NM mainspring.
Incabloc shock absorber.
29 jewels movement.
48 hour power reserve.
Adjusted in five-positions.
Coloured by black ruthenium plating.
Specific tri-compax plate, skeleton design with hand-finished Geneva stripes.
Specific tri-compax bridge skeleton design with hand-finished straight graining.
Automatic-winding bridge, skeleton design with hand-finished circular graining.
Rhodium-plated escape wheel with hand-finished straight graining.
Rhodium-plated steel mechanical parts, with hand-finished straight graining.
Barrel bridge, skeleton design with hand-finished circular graining.
Rotor, skeleton design with hand-finished Geneva stripes and printed balance.
Skeletonised rhodium-plated gear wheels.
Machined from solid stainless steel 316 L.
Monobloc caseband (machined movement housing) with brushed and satin finish.
Screw-down back-plate and bezel with polished finish
Screw-down crown with ‘Clous de Paris’ finish.
Buttons with ‘Clous de Paris’ finish.
Sapphire bezel with double sided anti-reflective coating (front and back).
Case dimensions: diameter 42 mm, width 13.9 mm.
Laser cut, galvanised, black finished with white print.
Hands: Skeletonised with Superluminova C1 insert (hour and minute hands).
Hand-made from Louisiana alligator-skin, hand-stitched, black calf leather lining.
Clasp: 316 L stainless steel, double push-button butterfly clasp with polished, satin, ‘Clous de Paris’ finish.