Over 2,500 visitors attended the exhibition this year, as it was the second year in the history of the prestigious show that it was open to the public, rather than exclusively to industry professionals and journalists. I could not miss such an important event and was introduced to the latest watch creations of horology’s most celebrated houses. Here is the selection of my favourite jewellery watches that SIHH 2018 had to offer.
“Distort time. Disrupt it. Give it a form, trace its outline, and make it appear and disappear at leisure.” - Cartier’s Révélation d’une Panthère mission statement.
One of the most photographed and written about watches of SIHH 2018 was undeniably Cartier's Révélation d’une Panthère. The watch took 5 years to develop, and holds 2 patents for the technology which allows the liquid suspension of over 900 golden beads. The movement of the gold beads across the 37mm 18k pink gold watch face within their sapphire crystal casing reveals the otherwise invisible Cartier panther motif. The motion of time itself is alluded to in the design of the piece, requiring the wearer to participate in the act of revealing the novelty of the design. The red and green dial Révélation d’une Panthère watches are available in a limited edition of 100, whereas the black dial version has unlimited availability.
For fashion led jewellery watch choices, Piaget released new editions of their ‘Possession’ collection watches, that feature a signature rotating bezel single or double halo of diamonds around the dial. The Hero piece of this line is a jewelled model with malachite dial surrounded by diamonds on a wide 18K rose gold chain that wraps around the wrist. The unusual link bracelet alludes to the vintage design motifs which Piaget are known for. The other variations of ladies’ watches from Possession line are comprised of white gold, or in lapis lazuli, turquoise, green malachite and red carnelian dials with matching toned interchangeable alligator straps. This limited-edition version of the Possession line is exclusively available in boutiques from February 2018.
Van Cleef&Arpels are the masters of high jewellery with hidden secrets, and their watches are no exception. The ‘Pivoine Secret’, ‘Chrysanthème Secret’ and the ‘Dandelion Secret’ high jewellery watches are all unique models with floral motifs bedazzled with gemstones. The ‘Pivoine Secret’ watch designed in the image of the peony while ‘Chrysanthème Secret’ replicates a chrysanthemum flower dappled in diamonds. Both pieces have miniature dials paved with spessartite garnets that are hidden under the petal in the centre of the watch. ‘Dandelion Secret’ watch has a different exterior: it is shaped as a torque bracelet embellished with colourless and yellow diamonds. The gems on dandelion clock are set ‘en tremblent’ and ‘dance’ with every step while the flower covered in yellow diamonds hides the watch face beneath its petals.
The first ladies’ ‘Royal Oak Concept’ watch of the Audemars Piguet line launched in 2002 contains all of the innovative technologies of the men’s counterparts, encased in a stunning diamond embellished design. The latest model presented at this year’s SIHH is the ‘Ladies' Royal Oak Concept Flying Tourbillon’; the 18k white gold openwork dial is set with 397 brilliant-cut diamonds and 174 baguette-cut diamonds. The 2 new ladies' Concept watches feature 38.5mm cases reveal flying tourbillon mechanism.
SIHH gains more international press coverage and interest with every year, and the creations which watch experts design specifically for the showcase become more elaborate and exciting in turn. Whether you are interested in men’s novelties or ladies jewelled timepieces; the Salon Internationale de Haute Horologie exhibit provides an opportunity to dive into the luxurious world of them both.
Some other notable watches at SIHH 2018: