Schwarz Etienne Ode Aux Saisons Edition I – Ode Au Printemps (Ode to Spring)

What happens if the bees go extinct? Its answer is a famous quote by Albert Einstein, who once said that “If the bee disappeared off the face of the Earth, man would only have four years left to live.”

With a new collection of watches unveiled at Baselworld 2018, Swiss luxury watch brand Schwarz Etienne reminds us the importance of protecting bees that play a major role in our eco system.

The new collection follows the footsteps of the “Ode à la Semaine/Ode to the Week” collection presented at Baselworld 2016 as homage to the prodigious craft of the Métiers d’Art and masterfully illustrated the days of the week created a profound, lasting impression. Two years later, Schwarz Etienne is paying tribute to the pinnacle of watchmaking, by presenting a new opus limited to 10 sets and composed of three iconic models. They carry the title: “Ode Au Printemps”.

Commencing with spring time, this first edition of “Odes aux Saisons”, explores the fascinating world of bees. These insects are celebrated in each of the three expertly-crafted and unique timepieces. Bees, closely associated to literature and philosophy, are represented in the coat of arms of the Swiss city where Schwarz Etienne resides –La Chaux-de-Fonds.

The first element of this collection is the Tourbillon Petite Seconde Rétrograde (PSR). Since its launch at Baselworld 2017, this creation has been revisited and reinterpreted by its master creators, who have worked tirelessly to carve the environment of the insect it honours. The dial has been reconfigured to resemble a honeycomb, the micro-rotor dressed with a poppy crafted in fine strips of coral and it comes adorned, naturally, with a hand painted bee.

Maintaining its pledge to provide only the finest stones on its timepieces, Schwarz Etienne integrates a tiger’s eye on the hour and seconds counter. A fine gemstone famed for its protective values, the tiger’s eye is revered for its soothing honey-brown tone which plays against the transparency of the hour discs and the Petite Seconde Rétrograde.

Already recognised as a core item of Schwarz Etienne La Chaux-de-Fonds collection, the Tourbillon Petite Seconde Rétrograde (PSR) comes with its own entirely in-house produced Irreversible TSE 122.00 movement with its micro-rotor at 9 o’clock, tourbillon visible at 1 o’clock and small second retrograde at 11 o’clock. Its power reserve is 72 hours. A rose gold case, comprising a hive-inspired engraved background, and a hand-sewn brown alligator strap with red alligator stitching and lining complete an exceptional timepiece.

The Flying Tourbillon, with a dial decorated in rhodium-plated honeycomb, is the second timepiece of this alluring collection. Immediately visible is its distinctive mass wheel featuring a hand painted white gold corn flower. Subtly decorated in blue agate, the ratchet illuminates the turning hour.

In a similar manner to the aforementioned Tourbillon Petite Seconde Rétrograde (PSR), the Flying Tourbillon also belongs to the La Chaux-de-Fonds collection and in this instance comes in white gold and equipped with the TSE 121.00 movement – micro-rotor at 9 o’clock and power reserve of 72 hours. A matte blue alligator strap with grey stitching and a light grey matte alligator lining complete this charming variant.

Enriching and completing the edition is the Roswell. In gaining its anthracite appearance, the cells have undergone black rhodium treatment. The daisy-shaped white gold mass wheel is entirely hand-chiselled.

This remarkable and meticulous work of cutting, engraving and miniature painting creates an environment for the bee to reveal its transparent trompe-l’oeil wings. The dial and ratchet have been decorated to create a honey-coloured kevlar texture in slight contrast to the rose gold case.

The Irreversible movement (ISE) of the Roswell model originates from the first automatic movement created, and fully manufactured, by Schwarz Etienne – the ASE. The latter has been inverted creating a new dimension in terms of design and allowing the collector to appreciate the complications on the dial side: the off-centre micro-rotor, the small second shifted to 11 o’clock, the exhaust bridge and the balance at 1 o’clock as well as an extended power reserve of more than 86 hours.

For this version, a black alligator strap with yellow stitching and a saffron alligator lining come to dress the work.

The engravers have carved their magic on the back of the two tourbillon pieces showcasing the cells of the hive on which the bees are foraging on while on the back of the Roswell, a famous calling quote from Albert Einstein appears: “If the bee disappeared off the face of the Earth, man would only have four years left to live.”

By honouring this vital insect through its new collection, Schwarz Etienne takes on Einstein’s message interpreting it to the modern day to raise awareness about the current dangers posed by the threat of bee extinction. Keystone of many ecosystems, bees provide humankind with invaluable services.

The “Ode aux Printemps” edition combines innovation and creativity, while emphasising the precision, careful attention to detail and industrious teamwork exhibited by bees.

The three timepieces are housed at the base of a mysterious and innovative presentation setting. As part of its commitment to participating in projects close to its values, such as raising awareness about the importance of environmental life and to support its local region, Schwarz Etienne has agreed to donate a percentage of the price of each gift-box sold to a beekeeper based in La Chaux-de-Fonds.

The owner of each collection will have the opportunity to follow the evolution of a hive assigned to Schwarz Etienne by receiving photos of their progress through the different seasons of the year. This commitment from Schwarz Etienne, in direct support of the cause represented by the threat of bee extinction, will last for fve years. The collector will also receive a kilogramme jar of honey per year, produced by the bees of the Schwarz Etienne hive.

Collection Ode au Printemps / Ode to Spring

Tourbillon Petite Seconde Rétrograde (PSR) (Reference WCF22TSEPRRB21AA-A)

Functions 
Off-center hours and minutes at 5 o’clock
Small second retrograde at 11 o’clock
Tourbillon at 1 o’clock

Movement 
Manufactured tourbillon with micro-rotor “Irreversible” TSE 122.00
72 hours power reserve
40 jewels, 256 components

Case 
Rose gold 5N 18ct (44 mm)
Glass Domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflection treatment on both sides
Water resistance: 5 ATM / 50 m

Dial 
Gilded brass in the form of honeycomb and subdial in tiger’s eye
Poppy-shaped micro-rotor mass wheel in fne strips of coral
Hand-engraved, hand-painted aluminium bee
Hour turning and small second retrograde in tiger’s eye
Hands: Brass with rhodium treatment and Super-Luminova®

Strap
Full skin brown alligator, hand-sewn with red alligator lining
Folding buckle in rose gold 5N 18ct with Schwarz Etienne logo

Collection Ode au Printemps / Ode to Spring
Flying Tourbillon (Reference WCF09TSEPRWG10AA-A)

Functions 
Hours, minutes centered
Tourbillon at 1 o’clock

Movement 
Manufactured flying tourbillon with micro-rotor “Irreversible” TSE 121.00
72 hours power reserve
34 jewels, 219 components
Case White gold 18ct (44 mm)
Glass Domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflection treatment on both sides
Water resistance: 5 ATM / 50 m

Dial 
Rhodium-plated in the form of a honeycomb and sub-dial in blue agate
Mass wheel of the micro-rotor hand painted in shape of cornflower
Ratchet adorned in blue agate
Hands: Brass with rhodium treatment and Super-Luminova®

Strap
Full skin matte blue alligator, hand-sewn with clear grey alligator lining
Buckle Folding buckle in with gold 18ct with Schwarz Etienne logo

Collection Ode au Printemps / Ode to Spring
Roswell (Reference WRW20TJPRRC01AA-A)

Functions 
Hours, minutes centered
Small second at 11 o’clock
Micro-rotor at 9 o’clock

Movement 
Manufactured automatic with micro-rotor “Irreversible” ISE 100.00
86 hours power reserve
36 jewels, 191 components

Case 
Red gold 5N 18 ct (45 mm)
Glass Domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflection treatment on both sides
Water resistance: 5 ATM / 50 m

Dial 
Slate-coloured, honeycomb-shaped brass and sub-dial in honey-coloured kevlar texture
Mass wheel of the micro-rotor in the shape of a daisy in rose gold. Hand-engraved, hand-painted aluminium bee
Kevlar-textured ratchet, honey coloured
Hands: Brass with golden 4N treatment

Strap 
Full skin black alligator, hand-sewn with matte saffron lining
Folding buckle in red gold 5N 18ct with Schwarz Etienne logo

 

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