The 12 signs of the Chinese zodiac calendar – Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig – correspond to a roughly 12-year cycle versus the Western zodiac associated with constellations. In its cycle as the year of the Rat, a sign is known for being curious, smart, and resourceful, 2020 marks the year of the Metal Rat, which further indicates success, strong, determined, and brave. Top watchmakers are marking 2020 with unique timepieces to commemorate this year and showcase highly intricate watches.
Chopard L.U.C. XP Urushi Year of the Rat
Swiss manufacturer Chopard presents the L.U.C. XP Urushi Year of the Rat in rose gold, taking inspiration from the old Japanese art of Urushi, an ancient lacquer art form that uses the sap of the Urushi tree. This limited-edition piece, only 88 made, was made in collaboration between Chopard and Yamada Heinado. The dial features a giant golden rat, an ear of corn, and the khaki fruit, which represents longevity, with a beautiful painted plant in blue, green, and gold, all lucky colors.
Jaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute Relief Rat
To celebrate this special year as the start of a new cycle in the Chinese calendar, Jaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute Relief Rat timepiece is one of four limited editions made. Featuring an onyx dial with a rat holding a pomegranate seed (known as a symbol for life and fertility) in its hands. With a larger pomegranate fruit depicted by rubies arranged in a snow setting, the hand-crated and hand-painted watch is limited to only eight pieces.
Harry Winston Premier Chinese New Year Automatic 36mm
The Harry Winston‘s rose gold timepiece is set against a vibrant red mother-of-pearl background with an artful silhouette of a rat. Limited to just eight pieces, the watch is set with both brilliant-cut and marquise-cut diamonds with a total of 109 diamonds weighing just under three carats. Powered by a mechanical automatic 210-part movement, the watch offers 68 hours of power reserve and is water-resistant to 30 meters.
Piaget Altiplano Zodiac Watch
Crafted in Grand Feu cloisonné enamel, the Piaget watch features two rats on the dial housed in a white gold case. Behind the brilliant piece of art is Anita Porchet, a master enamel artist who brings the rats to life on the Altiplano dial. Surrounding the dial is 78 brilliant-cut diamonds totaling 0.70ct in white gold.
Vacheron Constantin Metiers d’Art The Legend of the Chinese Zodiac
Inspired by the famous Chinese art of jianzhi or paper-cutting, Vacheron Constantin’s were presented a new opportunity to find creativity in this watch. The dial features a floral motif, Grand Feu enameling and a rat delicately placed in the center of the dial made in platinum or pink gold. Through four apertures on the edge of the dial, it shows the time (hours, minutes, days, and dates) so as not to draw attention for the center and artistry of the watch.