Jaeger-LeCoultre’s new Master Ultra Thin Squelette collection is a result of successful alliance between the watchmaking art and rare handcrafts. Meticulously crafted by master watchmakers, artistic craftsmen and gem setters from the prestigious Swiss watch manufacture that safeguards 180 fine skills, the Master Ultra Thin Squelette collection follows the footsteps of Hybris Artistica collection, a highly exclusive haute horlogerie collection from Jaeger-LeCoultre.
As the name indicates, this collection successfully merges the art of skeletonising with ultra thin watch making, a longstanding tradition mastered by Jaeger-LeCoultre since 1907. In this new collection, which is available in four versions, the Grande Maison has chosen to associate the ultra thin horology with other spheres of excellence, skeleton working, engraving, enamelling and gem-setting.
The extremely reliable Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 849ASQ in skeletonised form offers stunning views. As if infiltrated into the heart of the labyrinth, the gaze wanders (and wonders) among the gear wheels. It traces its path along the hand engraved bridges, finely chamfered in even the most apparently unattainable corners to which the artisan has nonetheless managed to give a special glow. The eye moves across a millimetre-accurate decor having called for extreme precision and dexterity, noting the fascinating light effects created by dedicated Haute Horlogerie finishes. All around the movement, Jaeger-LeCoultre has devised an elaborate stage-setting for the hours and minutes bearing its inimitable style signature. Harmony and clarity, both fundamental principles of the Grande Maison, are embedded in the genetic heritage of this new creation.
The Manufacture has treated the Master Ultra Thin Squelette to a dial divided into 12 zones, each delineated by hour-markers crafted in keeping with the noblest watchmaking traditions. Reading the time thus becomes both easy and pleasant. In the same way, the minute circle crowning the movement, revealed like a rare object, also demonstrates this ever-present concern for functionality.
The Rare Handcrafts (Métiers Rares®) featured on both the front and back of the watch are the very essence of these models presented in four different interpretations. Each Master Ultra Thin Squelette watch represents perfectly thought-out, seamless integration of design, watchmaking artistry and exceptional expertise.
Envisaging enamel to adorn the Master Ultra Thin Squelette watch represented a sizeable challenge, since the combination of this eminently delicate technique with the skeleton working of the movement – and all within an ultrathin 3.6 mm thick case – is an authentic feat. The white or pink gold is first adorned with a guilloché motif that gives a distinctive rhythm to the overall aesthetic of the watch. The artisan then applies the enamel to the dial surface and proceeds to the successive firing operations that reveal the chosen shade: a strongly pigmented deep blue for the white version, or a frosted chestnut brown to match the pink gold of the case. The back of the enamelled Master Ultra Thin Squelette watch provides a mirror image of the sequenced hour-zone design, highlighted by the energy of the colour. These two models are issued in 100-piece limited series forming a contemporary and highly distinctive field of expression.
Further, using mother-of-pearl and diamonds on a men’s watch is a strong aesthetic choice in itself.
Each of the hour zones is adorned with natural white mother-of-pearl that is hand-engraved to texture this delicate material. This technique also gives a unique rhythm to the dial via a kinetic effect. Finally, the fire of the brilliant-cut diamonds on the bezel sets the crowning touch to this masterfully sophisticated design. The Master Ultra Thin Squelette gem-set version flaunts its charms on each of its surfaces. On its 38 millimetre-diameter case measuring just 4.7 millimetres thick, the slender case band has been meticulously hand engraved. Finally, the back of the watch provides an identical replica of the watch face. The hour zones are also adorned with engraved mother-of-pearl, forming a glowing ring around the skeleton movement visible through the sapphire crystal.
The Master Ultra Thin Squelette gem-set version comes in a graphic white gold or a warm pink gold version. Each model is issued in a 100-piece limited series.
Model: Master Ultra Thin Squelette
Mechanical manually-wound movement,Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 849ASQ
33-hour power reserve
1.85 mm thick
Openworked, enamelled – or Openworked, engraved mother-of-pearl
Pink gold set with brilliant-cut diamonds
White gold set with brilliant-cut diamonds
Alligator leather, pin buckle