FURLAN MARRI x DOMINIQUE RENAUD x JULIEN TIXIER
"An ultra-simplified secular perpetual calendar, entirely made by hand, by passionate craftsmen."
ONLY WATCH AUCTION
Only Watch is a biennial charity auction of one-off watches created in 2005 to fund research into Duchenne muscular dystrophy and neuromuscular and genetic diseases. The motto of Only Watch: CREATE BEAUTY TO DO GOOD.
5 NOVEMBER 2023, 2PM SWISS TIME
Estimation CHF 20,000-30,000
A NEW STEP FOR THE BRAND
This unique piece, made entirely by hand and with our own secular perpetual calendar module, patented for this special occasion, is the wristwatch that gave birth to something important and exciting. It is the brand's most complex development to date. This is why we are pleased to introduce you a new adventure, made of innovation and research of fine watchmaking:
Furlan Marri Technical Line.
THE ILLUSION OF SIMPLICITY
“We decided to move away from conventional push-button correctors. Here, the corrector is in the form of a ring. A single corrector can be used to adjust the entire calendar, in either direction. Like a kind of minute repeater lock, the days and the entire perpetual calendar can be set with a single corrector.”
The module. Patented. Only 25 parts. 1.25mm thickness.
A Human Story. The perfect blend.
Two years ago, Andrea Furlan and Hamad Al Marri met Luc Pettavino, the founder of Only Watch. This led to the idea of working with Dominique Renaud, master watchmaker and long time friend, inventor and co-founder of Renaud & Papi (one of the most important Swiss movements manufacturer) and Julien Tixier, prototype watchmaker, to create a one-off watch for the charity auction.
Julien and Dominique had met in 2016, when Dominique was giving lectures on his DR01 project. The association of Dominique Renaud, with his 40 years of experience, and Julien Tixier, was the spark for rethinking the complication – practically from scratch. The result was a balancing act between opting for a classic complication and reinventing it with modern R&D methods.
Defying the laws of the calendar is an exercise both were amply familiar with: together, they had previously developed the exceptional 'Tempus Fugit' timepiece, both poetic in its interpretation of the passage of time and technically accomplished – it calculates time over the next 10,000 years with a secular module containing 51 components; the entire movement comprises 300 components.
The bracelet: It’s off to Geneva, where the watch will be matched with a silver Milanese mesh bracelet, entirely handcrafted by Laurent Jolliet, one of the last chainmakers in Europe. No machines are involved in the manufacture of the coils, and assembly and soldering are all by hand. Finally, the clasp, embellished with the craftsman’s stamp, is filed by hand. The result is astonishing: the Milanese mesh bracelet looks as if it is made of the supplest and smoothest cloth, hence its other name, "fabric bracelet".
Furlan Marri’s secular perpetual calendar is unique and revolutionary in its simplicity. Yet, as Dominique Renaud so aptly put it, "Sometimes, simplifying something complex can be quite complicated.”
ULTRA THIN 9.6 MM CASE
MADE OF SILVER, TURNED AND MACHINED BY HAND ENTIRELY, THE SECULAR PERPETUAL CALENDAR HAS AN-ULTRA THIN PROFILE OF 9.6 MM INCLUDING A 1.25MM MODULE. THE TOTAL THICKNESS INCLUDING THE GLASS IS 11.3MM FOR A 39 MM DIAMETER CASE.
SIMPLE AND SAFE, IT IS THE RESULT OF EXTREME SIMPLIFICATION, TOO.
“By simplifying the mechanism, we've made it totally modular, allowing us to configure the calendar as we wish. This way, we can switch from a secular perpetual calendar to a simple calendar, while keeping the same base and removing components,” explains Julien Tixier.
The oscillating weight is cut and beveled by hand by Dominique Renaud – a nod to his beginnings as a chamferer.
The entire secular perpetual calendar is machined, adjusted and finished by Julien Tixier. The plate is delicately sandblasted, then electroplated with a coat of 18K gold. The gears are circular grained and the date cams black polished by hand. The steel springs are straight-grained and beveled by hand, too.
GENUINE ARTISTRY AND CRAFTSMANSHIP
Origins of the Secular Calendar
Rewind: 1996 saw the introduction of the first wristwatch with a secular perpetual calendar. This rare complication encompasses all the variations of our Gregorian calendar, surpassing the classic perpetual calendar in terms of precision. Indeed, the perpetual calendar, though a fascinating complication in its own right, comes with certain limitations. If leap years are taken into account, secular years (one secular year = 100 years) are not. An adjustment is thus necessary to correct for this – every 100 years.
The secular perpetual calendar, on the other hand, accounts for both leap and secular years. The next secular year is 2100. This complication will identify the fact that this is a special year and therefore automatically pass from February 28th, 2100, to March 1st, 2100 – whereas the date change on a classic perpetual calendar would be from February 28th to February 29th, considering it a leap year. The secular perpetual calendar complication, quite complex as its name implies, has until now defied simplification.
Furlan Marri took up the challenge and teamed up with Dominique Renaud and Julien Tixier to create a truly special timepiece for the Only Watch 2023 charity auction. This project is undoubtedly the culmination of an amazing adventure in watchmaking. Above all, however, it is a human journey. It is this story, the encounters and the savoir-faire that Andrea Furlan and Hamad Al Marri, the co-founders of Furlan Marri, wish to share.