Visual Art: Blancpain Villeret Shakudō
The métiers d’art segment has in recent years become the most competitive in the watch industry. The most notable effort this year emerged from the Blancpain workshops in Switzerland’s Vallée de Joux. Though the house normally practices the traditional arts associated with watchmaking, it has begun to experiment with new crafts, including the Japanese metalworking process known as shakudō. The venerable practice of creating this copper-and-gold alloy, in the capable hands of Blancpain’s artisans, produces truly captivating colors, reliefs, and textures.
Each Blancpain Villeret Shakudō timepiece is one of a kind.
The dial is a blend of copper and gold (shakudō), which is then successively darkened through a traditional Japanese patination process (rokushō).
Foreground elements are damascened with different shades of gold and then engraved.
Blancpain, blancpain.com (starting at $160,600)