│Important Watches, Woods Room, November 28, 2012, 11am & 3pm│
Hong Kong – Christie’s Hong Kong will present its autumn auction of Important Watches on Wednesday, November 28, 2012 at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre. With a pre-sale estimate of HK$136 million/US$17 million, this season’s sale will present collectors with a diverse selection of 540 collectible horological creations, many of which are being offered at auction for the first time. Works by Patek Philippe continue to highlight the sale, with a variety of minute repeaters, chronographs and split-second perpetual calendars underscoring the selection. The Dragon Collection, comprising The Star Calibre 2000, and Ref. 3939 and Ref. 5016 wristwatches, underscores the collection this season. Other highlights extend to a set of four Ref. 5004 wristwatches unknown to the market, The Blue Chip Supremacy Collection comprising twenty five superlative wristwatches, and The Haute Joaillerie Collection, featuring contemporary diamond, emerald and ruby timepieces. The sale includes approximately 150 no reserve lots, and watches with values ranging from US$1,000-US$2 million, there are a variety of works for both new and seasoned collectors.
Click here to view the video of highlights from the autumn sale of Important Watches.
NEVER-BEFORE-SEEN HOROLOGICAL TREASURES BY PATEK PHILLIPPE
Founded in 1851, Patek Philippe is one of the most reputable and desired watchmakers in the world. The company first drew the attention of European elite with their horological advances when they exhibited the initial keyless watches at the Great Exhibition in London’s Crystal Palace in 1851. Since then, these prestigious timepieces have never wavered in their appeal, due to the Swiss manufacture’s philosophy of perfection and commitment to scholarship, craftsmanship and innovation.
Leading the selection of works by the celebrated house this season is The Dragon Collection. Highlighted by three horological masterpieces, this collection is being presented to the public for the first time. The Star Calibre 2000 (Lot 2952, illustrated left, est: HK$18,000,000-32,000,000/US$2,300,000-4,000,000) stands as a testament to the modern innovation of watchmaking. Featuring twenty-one complications to commemorate the Millenium, The Star Calibre is the result of 7 years of research, maufacture and development by Patek Phillippe.
Truly a one-of-a-kind collection, The Dragon Collection also includes a very rare and possibly unique wristwatch with mother-of-pearl dial, Ref. 3939, circa 2011 (Lot 2687, est: HK$2,800,000-4,400,000/US$350,000-550,000) and an extremely rare and highly important 18K gold perpetual calendar minute repeating tourbillon wristwatch, Ref. 5016, circa 2010 (Lot 2908, est: HK$3,200,000-4,800,000/US$400,000-600,000). These timepieces are unique not only because of their impressive number of complications, but also because of their rich aesthetic value, transforming a practical timepiece into a masterful work of art. In a world of increasing scholarship and burgeoning demand, examples such as the present two models become next to impossible finds.
Four unknown Patek Philippe Ref. 5004 wristwatches, consigned by a private watch collector, also underscore the timepieces from Patek Philippe this season (Lot 2840, 2866, 2903 & 2930, illustrated left). Reference 5004 was launched in 1995 and has since been discontinued, today replaced by Reference 5204. The present four each feature a ‘one-of-kind’ dial to complement their respective case metals, exemplifying a combination of mechanical complexity, dial design, and exclusivity. Another unique element of these dials is the tachymetre scale, fully confirmed by the Certificate of Origin from Patek Philippe.
Also of note this season is The Blue Chip Supremacy Collection, comprised of twenty five unusual and highly sought after wristwatches. This collection is a testament to a man with excellent taste who believed in the tested values of heritage, as illustrated by his inclusion of timepieces from some of the oldest and most well-known watch manufacturers, such as Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet, Vacheron Constantin, Girard-Perregaux and Blancpain. These brands share over a hundred decades of watch manufacturing expertise and technological innovation between them. Highlights of the collection extend to three black dial Patek Philippe wristwatches, an extremely rare and only known platinum automatic minute repeating wristwatch with black enamel dial and Breguet numerals, Ref. 3979 (Lot 2951, est: HK$3,200,000-4,800,000/US$400,000-600,000), and an extremely rare and highly important platinum perpetual calendar minute repeating tourbillon wristwatch with retrograde date, moon phases and leap year indication, Ref. 5016 (Lot 2747, illustrated right, est: HK$3,200,000-5,200,000/US$420,000-650,000), and the limited edition very fine and important platinum limited edition automatic minute repeating wristwatch, Ref. 5029 (Lot 3039, est: HK$3,300,000-5,200,000/US$420,000-650,000).
The timepieces on offer this season are characterized by their impressive artistry and remarkable attention to detail. Exemplifying this theme of excellence in craftsmanship is a work by Patek Philippe, a fine and unique 18k gold hunter case keyless pocket watch with enamel miniature by Suzanne Rohr after F. Boucher, circa 1992 (Lot 2743, illustrated left, est: HK$880,000-1,500,000/US$110,000-200,000). Consigned by an important private collector, the pocket watch has never been offered for public sale. The artist Suzanne Rohr has collaborated with Patek Philippe since 1967 and is regarded as the world’s finest enamel miniaturist. Rohr’s works combine the art of painting, such as 18th century Neoclassical, Old Master and Impressionist paintings, with the art of watch-making. Works of this caliber bearing Rohr’s enamel ornamention exist only in limited quanities, as the artist produces just two or three pocket watches featuring her signature enamel ornamentation each year.
THE WORLD OF HAUTE JOAILLERIE – EIGHT SUPERLATIVE JEWELED TIMEPIECES
Comprised of eight diamond, emerald and ruby-set timepieces, the collection of Haute Joaillerie encompasses the timeless elegance of the classical models by Piaget, Van Cleef & Arpels, Corum and Baume & Mercier. Highlighting the collection is a Piaget lady’s magnificent and rare 18K gold, diamond and emerald-set bracelet watch, Aura Model, manufactured in 1989 (Lot 3028, est: HK$1,000,000- 1,800,000/$US125,000-225,000) and a Piaget lady’s very rare and possibly unique 18K white gold and diamond-set hexagonal wristwatch with brown diamond-set concealed dial, manufactured in 1998 (Lot 2735, illustrated left, est: HK$1,000,000-1,800,000/US$125,000-225,000). Set with approximately 94 diamonds weighing 15.81cts and one single brown diamond of approximately 8.34cts, the latter is the most spectacular Piaget to ever come to market. This sophisticated treasure was possibly made to special order rendering it unique.
JAEGER LECOULTRE: THE EMBODIMENT OF MODERN HOROLOGICAL SOPHISTICATION
- CHARITY AUCTION -
This autumn, Christie’s is honored to have been chosen to auction the Grande Reverso Blue Enamel Prototype by Jaeger-LeCoultre (Lot 3064, illustrated right, no estimated value is given for this watch; suggested retail price is HK$357,000) to help fight child sexual abuse and support the charity organization, End Child Sexual Abuse Foundation (ECSAF). Christie’s will donate all of the buyer’s premium for the sale of the present lot. The End Child Sexual Abuse Foundation (ECSAF) is a Hong Kong-based charity dedicated to the fight against abuse of children under the age of 18. The Foundation was founded in 1998 by Ms Siao Fong Fong, an internationally renowned actress, and a certified child psychologist.
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