Jaquet Droz’s latest métiers d’art dial is limited to just eight pieces and uses ancient enameling to show off its exquisite design and technical prowess. The Petite Heure Minute Smalta Clara Hummingbird is the latest timepiece in Jaquet Droz’s legendary collection of hand-crafted limited-edition decorative dials.
The brand today creates timepieces that are a blend of works of art and technical wizardry using precious minerals, rare woods, and age-resistant enamel to distinguish each masterpiece. In-house artisans excel at plique-à-jour (or ‘Smalta Clara’ in Latin) enameling – a technique that demands a rare dexterity for a naturalistic, lively, and unique composition – to portray what essentially is a stunning stained glass window for the wrist. This extremely precise technique dates back 1,500 with only a handful of artisans trained to do it, meaning that each piece shines with individuality and delicacy.
Priced at $56,400 each, the 18-karat red gold case measures 35 mm and sits on a hand-embroidered green satin strap with 100 diamonds on the bezel and pallet lugs. The mother-of-pearl dial features a meticulous hummingbird crafted in a subtle gradient of seven shades of green and an off-centered dial at two o’clock.
The watch contains the Jaquet Droz automatic caliber 6150, with a 38-hour power reserve and when flipped around, the bird is shown in reverse and the micro-rotor, is engraved with another likeness of the hummingbird and its feathers.
The Swiss watchmaker dates back to its founder Pierre Jaquet-Droz, who began attracting worldwide praise with his extraordinary grandfather clocks in 1738 and has used similar traditional techniques ever since. The Swatch Group purchased Jaquet-Droz in 2000 and is the current maker of Jaquet-Droz luxury watches, destined to restore the brand according to its roots but in a modern way.