In the 1950s, the design of Rolex watches arrived at its peak, notably with the production of cloisonné enamel dial wristwatches.
The production of these dials was extremely costly as they had to be individually made by a skilled craftsman and not on a production line.
The artist created the outline of the desired motif by arranging thin gold wires on a dial. These partitions, called "cloisonné" in French, were filled with small quantities of enamel powder in the desired color. The dial was then fired in an oven at around 1000 degrees Celsius causing the powder to melt. Finally it was hand-polished until obtaining of a perfectly flat surface.
Consequently, such dials were often made to special order representing a particular subject requested by the client.
Rolex cloisonné enamel dial watches were and still are considered the most unusual and attractive watches the company ever made and are thus highly looked after by collectors.
After further research in the archives of the dial manufacturer Stern Frères in Geneva, Rolex's supplier of dials at the period, has resulted in the discovery of the original drawing for the design of this rare and unusual Rolex cloisonné enamel dial.