The Tourbillon Reimagined

François-Paul Journe modeled the Historical Anniversary Tourbillon on his first horological effort, a pocket watch he constructed in 1983; Photo by Claude Joray

One of the most celebrated feats in watchmaking, the tourbillon, was patented more than 200 years ago by Abraham-Louis Breguet, but today it exists in the designs of nearly every venerated watchmaker. As a result, the highly complex mechanism—created to compensate for errors caused by the earth’s gravitational force—has been adapted to propel a wide range of styles and aesthetics. Here are three examples from the past year that show why the tourbillon continues to fascinate watch collectors.

"As a collector myself, I became disillusioned as I discovered how much watch brands relied on outside suppliers to create their pieces," says Fabien Lamarche, who founded a new boutique watch...
For watchmakers and watch collectors alike, François-Paul Journe is a symbol of the entire independent watchmaking movement in Switzerland: an artisan who found success without surrendering control...
The new Graham Tourbillon Orrery celebrates the 300th anniversary of the Orrery, the tabletop mechanical planetarium that the Swiss watch brand’s namesake—London-based inventor, clockmaker, and...