3 New Jaquet Droz Watches for China’s Year of the Horse

Jaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute - HorseAs Americans mark the start of 2014, China celebrates the Year of the Horse, the seventh sign in the Chinese Zodiac. To commemorate it, Jaquet Droz, a watch brand long associated with China, is releasing a series of Ateliers d’Art timepieces with artistic dials.

Each of the three new Jaquet Droz watches features at least one of three highly complex artistic decorative technique on its dial: engraving, painting and grand feu enamel. All are from Jaquet Droz’s Petite Heure Minute collection, with hours and minutes indicated on an off-center subdial.

The smallest of the new watches, the Jaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute 39 mm (U.S. price: $30,500), has an ivory grand feu enamel dial with miniature paintings of two Arab thoroughbreds — considered by many to be the most beautiful horses in the world — in full gallop.

Jaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute Horse 39 mmThe largest watch, the Petite Heure Minute 43 mm ($57,800), features a bas-relief sculptural illustration of a wild mustang, a horse native to the American northwest, in rose gold. The dial is in black grand feu enamel. Jaquet Droz’s master craftsmen have used the champlevé technique to highlight the motion of the horse’s mane and tail, both of which have been filled in with grand feu enamel. It is the first use of champlevé in a Jaquet Droz watch.

Both the Petite Heure Minute 39 mm and Petite Heure Minute 43 mm contain Jaquet Droz’s mechanical, automatic Caliber 2653, here with a hand-engraved horse’s-head motif on the white-gold rotor, which is visible through a sapphire caseback window.

Jaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute - Horse 43 mmJaquet Droz Petite Heuer Minute 39 mm - Horse - Back

The third limited-edition watch is the Petite Heure Minute 41 mm ($62,000), with a dial in mother-of-pearl depicting a rearing horse in front of the Great Wall of China. The 18k rose gold horse figure is engraved and patinated by hand. This watch is also powered by Jaquet Droz Caliber 2653, which in this version boasts a 22k rose-gold rotor with a hand-engraved depiction of the Great Wall next to Jaquet Droz’s two-star signature. The movement has a double barrel providing a 68-hour power reserve.

Jaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute - Horse 41 mmJaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute 41 mm - Horse- Back

All the new Jaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute Horses models have 18k rose gold cases (water-resistant to 30 meters) and are available on either a black or brown alligator leather strap. The new, limited collection of Ateliers d’Art watches calls to mind once again the connection between China and the brand’s namesake, Swiss watch pioneer Pierre Jaquet-Droz, said to be the first watchmaker to enter the gates of the Forbidden City.

Jaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute Horses collection
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