Mechanical watches and clocks have such a rich history, the craft of making mechanical watches enduring for centuries, until the advent of the quartz watch which changed the watch world forever.
In the modern age, a more mass approach to the creation of products came into play also touching the luxury sector, with delightful exception by a growing number of artisans and watch lovers, patrons of the fine art of watchmaking. The word ‘patron’ is rooted in Latin, its definition is ‘Father’; hence, a patron of the Arts is one who “begets” and protects the Arts.
[pullquote]At the AHCI you can touch the watchmaker who makes your watch.” – Svend Andersen[/pullquote] For those that love mechanical watches, who seek the unique, there is an outstanding resource for handmade fine timepieces; Académie Horlogère des Créateurs Indépendants or Horological Academy of Independent Creators (AHCI), an organization revitalizing through their patronage, the uniting of skilled craftsmen who made each piece entirely by hand with meticulous detail and in small quantity.
Mechanical Watches and the AHCI
When founding the AHCI in 1984, the foundation members, Svend Andersen and Vincent Calabrese wanted to prove that beside industrial watch and clock manufacturing, there was also a need for manual and artistic watchmaking and that craftsmanship could still occupy an important place.
“After the advent of the quartz watches and the crisis of the 70’s we were convinced that there was a growing interest for mechanical watches.” – the two founders state.
Early Beginnings in a Museum
A first exhibition took place at the watch museum of Le Locle in 1985, starting with 6 members presenting their unique creations. Today the AHCI unites more than 30 idealists from all over the world. Their existence is based on a solid know-how of classical watchmaking. They promote exceptional horological innovations as well as special technical and artistic executions which actively contributes to the conservation and continued existence of the horological heritage.
Unique and Exceptional Models and Talents
Some of the very unusual and exceptional models of many famous watch brands and clock manufacturers are creations of our horological academicians.
AHCI and Baselworld
Since 1987 the AHCI is participating at the watch fair “Baselworld” and many other watch fairs around the globe offering every year to collectors and connoisseurs of authentic horology as well as to the international press the opportunity to get in contact with the true horologists who are personally presenting their innovations and high grade master pieces.
Mission of Preservation and Maintenance
Our mission is not only to preserve and maintain the horological heritage but also to promote this exceptional profession by offering talented young watchmakers the opportunity to realize and share their creations by exhibiting at the watch fairs together with the members of the AHCI.
“The AHCI is instrumental in helping new generation of independent watchmakers to develop their own brands.” – Vincent Calabrese
LIST OF AHCI MEMBERS
Pita, Aniceto Jiménez
Van der Klaauw, Christiaan