Swiss luxury watch atelier LOUIS MOINET has launched MAYA ECLIPSE, an extremely symbolic wristwatch that pays tribute to the charismatic Maya peoples and the rich history of Mexico. This unique and extraordinary piece was presented for the first time at SIAR (Salón Internacional Alta Relojería) in Mexico, from 18th to 20th October 2022.
The MAYA ECLIPSE watch evokes the mesmeric cosmic phenomenon named eclipse. It showcases the extravagant encounter between the moon and the sun 18 times per hour, with the magical axis of the Kukulcán Pyramid serving as its centre point.
Mayan society and culture drew an important association between astronomy, the vision of the Cosmos, religion and politics. Brilliant mathematicians and architects, the Mayans were also fervent observers of the stars and other celestial phenomena.
They used their observations to create various calendars, some of which were highly complex and extremely accurate. They used these to measure time, enabling them to determine the phases of the moon and the position of the sun during eclipses, solstices and equinoxes.
This unique creation combines striking elements of Mayan culture with the watchmaking expertise of Ateliers Louis Moinet. The concept was developed by the young jewellery artist, Nathanaël Schaller, national winner of the French Prix des Métiersd’Art in 2020.
Pyramidal architecture features in the shape of the watch’s mysterious and complex movement, whose stepped construction projects from the centre. This movement has two satellite tourbillons that rotate in opposite directions, with their counterweights representing a moon and a sun inspired by Mayan symbols.
They cross and overlap 18 times per hour, i.e. 432 times per day, with each meeting producing a striking and poetic eclipse, from where the timepiece gets its legendary name: MAYA ECLIPSE.
At the top of the movement’s mechanical axis sits a fragment of jade. Its position at the top of the pyramid is symbolic, since jade was considered more precious than gold by the Mayans, who used it to make various artefacts to feature in their rites and ceremonies.
The back of the dial is made from coloured mother-of-pearl, an exquisite and ethereal material which reminds us that the Kukulcán Pyramid is built over a cenote. Cenotes are natural pits primarily found in North and Central America. Usually filled with fresh water (though sometimes with sea water), they were considered sacred by the Mayans. The transparent flange features hour-markers with Mayan numerals made up of lines and dots. These graphical elements make for easy time reading.
The pyramid is made from 18k 5N rose gold and is adorned with guilloché geometric patterns that play with light and shade to stunning effect. This recalls the phenomenon that occurs at the Kukulcán Pyramid itself during equinoxes: the sun strikes the north-west corner of the pyramid, creating the illusion that the serpent is descending the steps of the pyramid.
The LOUIS MOINET MAYA ECLIPSE watch depicts the Kukulcán Pyramid seen from the above, with its nine levels and four staircases.
Model: LOUIS MOINET MAYA ECLIPSE
Frame material: 18K 5N rose gold, polished and satin-brushed
Container material: Glare-proofed sapphire crystal
Glass: Glare-proofed sapphire crystal
Diameter: 43.5 mm
Thickness: 18.3 mm
Coloured mother-of-pearl dial base
Appliqués in 18K 5N rose gold, hand guilloche
Flying satellite double tourbillon
Two tourbillons with reversed rotation direction
18 hourly crossings (every 3 minutes and 20 seconds)
Upper tourbillon: Hourly rotation, 1 revolution in 5 minutes
Lower tourbillon: Anti-clockwise rotation, 1 revolution in 10 minutes
Manufacture Louis Moinet Calibre LM105
Function selector: Winding and Time setting
Finishes on the upper side Tourbillon bridges: Steel, mirror-polished
Balances: Sandblasted, mirror-polished, diamond-polished
“Moon” counterweight: Polished, rhodium-plated
“Sun” counterweight: Polished, 3N gilded, diamond-planed rays
Upper insert: Jade
Finishes on the underside Steel parts: Polished chamfers and straight graining
Gear trains: Circular satin-brushed
Mainplate: Vertical “Côtes de Genève” hobnail pattern, polished sinks, polished chamfers
Components: Two barrels, Six ceramic ball bearings (44 balls)
Oscillations: 21,600 vibrations/hour
Frequency: 3 Hz
Power reserve: 48 hours
Diameter: 38.5 mm
Height : 13.6 mm
Hours and Minutes
Louisiana alligator leather| Alligator lining, hand-sewn
Clasp: Folding clasp in 18K 5N rose gold, Curved “Fleur de Lys”