Vacheron Constantin is pursuing its dialogue with collectors and passionate devotees of Haute Horlogerie by enriching its Métiers d’Art collection with an homage to the Middle East cultural heritage. Showcasing a handcrafted falcon, a proud symbol of the region, this limited edition pays tribute to the glorious heritage of the Gulf area while celebrating its bright future and will be solely available in Vacheron Constantin boutiques in the GCC.
Bearing the Hallmark of Geneva, this innovative creation, realized in ten models only, combines the technical excellence of Caliber 2460 G4 with the beauty of artistic crafts.
Rich heritage and traditions need to be preserved for future generations.
Some of the distinct features of the Arab and Islamic heritage are traditions, arts, hospitality, tolerance, lifestyle and values.
Since the pre-islamic era, Arabs are attached to the art of falconry. Primarily a means to supplement an otherwise meagre diet, falconry was an integral part of desert life. Today, falconry is practiced purely for sport, but the skill of the falconer is still highly esteemed and the power and beauty of the falcon greatly treasured. The training process hasn’t changed since. Through time and progress the Arabs gave special care to falcons, the sport of hunting and its preservation. The official and public efforts have been integrated in drawing the portrait of enthusiasm for hunting, which relate them back to the lifestyle and the traditions of their ancestors and grandfathers.
In the same spirit as falconry has been cherished as the cultural heritage from the region, Vacheron Constantin has since 260 years safeguarded and further developed the tradition of fine Swiss watchmaking. The Maisons master watchmaker and craftsmen have expressed this common spirit in a unique way in the Metiers d’Art Gyr.
The heritage of Vacheron Constantin is the unique nature of the Maison: an uninterrupted history going back to 1755, devoted to watchmaking excellence.
The inseparable values cherished by the Geneva-based Manufacture are deeply rooted in the heritage and open-mindedness of the founders: the transmission of fine watchmaking traditions and savoir-faire, the spirit of innovation and the continual quest for excellence. A state of mind that involves each stage of unique craftsmanship skills, from design to finishing.
Traditional arts meet at the crossroads of different cultures. To highlight this exceptional savoir-faire, the model Métiers d’Art Gyr is created from the alliance of artistic crafts, that are rooted in Swiss watchmaking as in the culture of the Middle East region.
The demanding art of hand engraving calls for exceptional patience and dexterity. It is used in the Maison right from the start as a means of achieving ethereal lightness. The first watch created by Jean-Marc Vacheron in 1755 already featured an openworked and engraved balance-cock. A master in the practice of this extremely intricate discipline carves the falcon, delicately applied to the dial centre, from a solid piece of 18K white gold with the bird’s details being only a fraction of a millimeter wide. The design and expression of the game is inspired by the Gyr falcon, considered as the most prestigious falcon in the GCC, symbol of pride, determination and intelligence.
Error-free control of each hand movement and clear overall vision of the shape are demanded for the engraving of the piece, to be dynamic and proportioned, associating them according to its inspiration with the complex to master artistic craft of figurative guilloché. A technique that has been invented by Vacheron Constantin’s master guillocheur.
For the desert motif on the gold dial, the craftsman uses small and different patterns, and by combining them, he gives life to the mesmerizing décor. The pattern remains semi-embedded and stands out from its gold base by a subtle stage-setting of the accentuating reliefs. It creates a depth effect which makes the falcon appear to be floating over the dial. Achieving the necessary mastery of colour and of reactions to reach the translucent dark blue and sand color adorned to highlight the subtle depth of the landscape calls for an expertise that can only be acquired over long years of experience.
A movement that leaves plenty of space for artistic expression
Caliber 2460 G4 makes it possible to create a distinctive and ideal stage-setting for the decorative arts, by giving the central dial motif a starring role. The hands-free time display is achieved through four apertures showing the hours, minutes, days and dates. These indications – the first two of the dragging variety and the last two of the jumping type – proudly embody the longstanding savoir-faire of the Maison in designing and developing original displays. Clearly visible through the sapphire crystal back of the platinum case, the 22-carat gold oscillating weight is adorned with a recurrent islamic pattern tapisserie inspired by the architecture of the Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi testifying to both: finishes performed in keeping with the finest watchmaking traditions and a position at the watches heart – symbolising the emotional connection the Grand Mosque has in the hearts of all UAE citizens and its majestic, distinctly visible location at the entrance of Abu Dhabi as a testament to the vision of its founder, Sheikh Zayed.
All movement components are indeed finely finished in accordance with the criteria of the Hallmark of Geneva, a quality label of which Vacheron Constantin is the most faithful representative.
Above and beyond the technical prowess they enshrine, these creations celebrate an artistic vision of time and tell of stories inspired by arts and cultures from the United Arab Emirates.
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Centre for Cultural Understanding – a dignified location for the unveiling of Métiers d’ Art Gyr.
In the Arab heritage, sharing and solidarity among members of the society come along with honour and pride associated with being part of this heritage. The vision of his Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to reach out and share the traditions and customs of the UAE led to the creation of The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding. The centre based in the old heart of Dubai, preserves and communicates the distinct culture of the Emirates and continues to be a bridge between the many different nationalities living, working and visiting the UAE. It represents a valuable home for the unveiling of Vacheron Constantin’ s tribute to a proud heritage and an innovative future.