From April 6 to 23, 2022, at its historic headquarters on Rue du Rhône, the manufacture is presenting nearly 60 Rare Handcrafts creations that pay tribute to a wide range of artisanal skills. Apart from these treasures that reflect wonderfully inspired, magnificent craftsmanship, visitors can also watch masters of their art demonstrating tradition-steeped techniques.
As the guardian of the grand Genevan watchmaking tradition, Patek Philippe is deeply committed to preserving the artisanal skills with which timepieces have been lavishly decorated for nearly five hundred years. Each year, the manufacture unveils a new collection of one-of-a-kind pieces and limited editions that focus the spotlight on such talents. This also applies to the 2022 collection (a total of 59 creations including 15 dome table clocks, 9 miniature dome table clocks, 10 pocket watches, and 25 wristwatches) with a rich palette of different artisanal techniques such as grand feu cloisonné enamel, miniature painting on enamel (a genuine Genevan specialty), manual engraving, manual guilloching and paillonné enamel – not to mention skills like wood micromarquetry and Longwy enamel on faience that are so unique in watchmaking artistry.
As was already the case in the past years, the 2022 Rare Handcrafts collection is a veritable fireworks of creativity inspired by an abundance of many different sources.
Among the numerous topics of this year, a showcase also exhibits several objects directly related to Geneva, the domicile of Patek Philippe. One of them is the dome table clock 20118M “Bol d’Or” in cloisonné and paillonné enamel as a reminder of the seven trophies that the manufacture’s honorary president Philippe Stern won at this famous regatta on the Lake of Geneva. The case back of the pocket watch 995/130G-001 ”Swan“ shows this typically Genevan bird in wood micromarquetry. Another showcase presents the magic of the tropical jungle. A further one recalls the maiden flights across the English Channel, the Atlantic, and the Pacific.
The “Haut artisanat 2022” (Rare Handcrafts 2022) exhibition at the Patek Philippe Salons on Rue du Rhône 41 is open to the public every day except Sundays from April 6 to 23, 2022, from 11 am to 6 pm. Visitors are requested to preregister online at the patek.com website starting on March 28, 2022.
For the first time, the “Haut artisanat 2022” exhibition will also take place in Paris: From May 14 to 22, 2022, in a gallery on Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré 85, that will be totally remodeled for this event.
A Famous Regatta on Lake Geneva
This unique piece was inspired by the world-famous Bol d’Or (Golden Globe) regatta, which Philippe Stern, honorary president of Patek Philippe, won seven times with his boats, each christened Altaïr. The dates of these victories are inscribed in miniature painting on enamel, while the course of the race is charted in gold wire on the dome.
The enameller used 13.8 m of 24K yellow-gold wire (27.6 g) measuring 0.2 × 0.6 mm in cross-section and 64 colors and blends of translucent, opaque, semi-opaque and opalescent enamels and miniature painting on enamel. Embedded gold leaf illuminates the buoy and 13 star-shaped spangles called paillons, also in gold leaf, light up the dome. Each enameled plate required 8 to 10 firings at 820°C. An hour circle in ebony, set with 12 gilt applied hour markers in the shape of mooring posts, frames a dial center in cloisonné enamel. A handcrafted cable motif resembling cordage adorns the borders of the hour circle and the clock frame.
This piece is powered by the caliber 17’’’ PEND mechanical movement rewound by an electric motor.
The Prince of Lake Geneva
A swan, symbolizing light, grace, love and fidelity and emblematic of Lake Geneva, glides across the back of this unique piece in white gold showcasing the highly refined technique of micro wood marquetry.
To reproduce all the elegance of the plumage and the long curving neck, as well as the subtle play of reflections in the water, the marquetry maker cut out and assembled 223 pieces of veneer and 30 tiny inlays, shaped from 23 species of wood of different colors, textures and veining. The dial, in black enamel, presents white-gold applied Breguet numerals and white-gold leaf-shaped hour, minute and seconds hands, embellished with hand-engraving. A spessartine cabochon (0.44 ct) adorns the crown.
This pocket watch is accompanied by a white-gold handcrafted stand resting on a foot set with a spessartine cabochon (0.46 ct) on an oval-shaped base in silver-sheen obsidian.
It houses the caliber 17’’’ LEP PS manually wound movement with small seconds.