For some, a watch is merely a manner of getting to appointments on time, keeping track of their busy schedule in the pursuit of living a full and satisfying life. For others, only the most beautiful timepiece will do to serve as a heirloom for generations to come.
And still for others, the measurement of time is an art in of itself; the alchemy of both art and science, employed to arrive at a beautifully engineered instrument to measure even the minutest increments of time. I have always enjoyed history, reading of civilizations long past, gleaning insight, wisdom, and wonder from the study of ideals still very relevant today. But when I was introduced to the world of horology five years ago, it was as if I had stumbled upon a land of insurmountable wonders and innovation. I discovered an area of study that melded my love of art, math, sculpture, fine jewellery, and engineering into some of the most innovative instruments I have ever seen, as beautiful within as they are without. And I have been enchanted ever since.
In my opinion, refined taste in timepieces can provide an introspective example of the appreciation of quality, design, and craftsmanship. This level of attentiveness requires a high measure of consideration. True luxury goods are built upon the foundation of intellectual curiosity. In this way, I have found a kindred spirit in Louis Moinet, noted master watchmaker, sculptor, painter, and inventor of the chronograph. His love for knowledge in both science and art are well documented. And his love of self-improvement was only matched by his acumen for masterful innovation. He was an artist in the purest sense and devoted his life to elevating the measurement of time to be beautiful in function and design. This pursuit afforded him many famed customers including Napoleon Bonaparte, Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe, and a dear friend and collaborator, Abraham-Louis Breguet, master horologist and founder of Breguet. He was also a man who enjoyed sharing his knowledge with others and never shied away from this, as can be seen in his monumental, two-volume work, the Traité d’Horlogerie. And this work is still referenced to this day as one of the most informative references of horology.
But Moinet’s most treasured innovation, the Moinet Compteur de Tierces, was not recognized for its tremendous advancements in engineering and accuracy in his lifetime. This magnificent feat of ingenuity and precision was ‘lost’ to the world of horology until its discovery during Christie’s 2012 ‘Important Watches’ auction, where it was purchased by Ateliers Louis Moinet CEO, Jean Marie Schaller. Now, at the bicentenary of his greatest achievement, Ateliers Louis Moinet celebrates his innovation and their tenth anniversary with their own innovation, the Memoris, the world’s first chronograph timepiece.
This timepiece is a masterful tribute to the Moinet legacy of innovative horology. The chronograph function is the heart of the timepiece, on display for all to see. In addition to the sheer beauty in form and function of this custom designed chronograph, its “Energie Plus” automatic pawl winding system allows the timepiece to be wound in both directions while maintaining a level of precision and accuracy unseen within any timepiece currently made. And this turns the current idea and definition of a luxury timepiece almost inside out.
Where once chronograph complications were unseen, Ateliers Louis Moinet has masterfully made this function the focal point of the piece, harkening back to Moinet’s main pursuit: to create a masterful timepiece, beautifully innovative in function as it is in form. And so remarkable has their achievement been that the Memoris has been nominated for the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG), the ‘Oscars’ of the watch world, which took place on October 29th at the Grand Théâtre de Genève.
On this most wondrous occasion, Ateliers Louis Moinet has crafted 3 limited editions, 60 copies each, of the Memoris. Available in 18K rose gold, white rhodium-plated gold mainplate, and white-blued gold mainplate, the Memoris is a true testament to the innovative spirit and dedication of one of the most masterfully talented watchmakers to have ever lived. http://www.louismoinet.com/