Throughout history, watchmakers have explored astronomical phenomena, harnessing their technical skills to express the movements of the moon and stars in mechanical form. Indeed, the origins of time measurement itself lie in mankind’s ability to understand the rhythm of the cosmos.
For Jaeger-LeCoultre, the moon and stars have a special resonance, due to the exceptional clarity of the night sky above its home in Switzerland’s Vallée de Joux, and this year its watchmakers and artistic craftsmen return to the celestial theme. To coincide with the 76th Venice International Film Festival – La Biennale di Venezia, La Grande Maison presents a dazzling new interpretation of that most beloved of astronomical complications, the moon phase.
DAZZLING RENDEZ-VOUS MOON
The moon: Luna. Symbol of romance and femininity. The source of nature’s ebb and flow, the cycle of the seasons, and inspiration for artists and poets. The closest heavenly body to Earth, yet still so enigmatic.
Dazzling Rendez-Vous Moon pays tribute to feminine strength and beauty, presenting La Grande Maison’s emblematic moon phase function in a magnificent new setting. Echoing the serene beauty of the night sky, the icy sparkle of diamonds is warmed by pink gold and complemented by glowing white mother of pearl.
This new, fully gem-set interpretation of Dazzling Rendez-Vous follows the launch of Dazzling Rendez-Vous Night & Day (in white gold or pink gold) and Dazzling Rendez-Vous Moon (in white gold) at SIHH in January this year, followed by the ruby-set Dazzling Rendez-Vous Red, on the occasion of Shanghai International Film Festival in June.
The Dazzling Rendez-Vous Moon bezel comprises 108 diamonds, forming two concentric rings around the watch case. There’s an airy quality to these glittering circles, thanks to the claw (or ‘griffes’) setting of the outer ring of 36 stones. A classical jewellery technique – indeed, it was employed by Jaeger-LeCoultre’s craftsmen for Model 101, the celebrated High Jewellery design of the 1920s – it requires great precision. Designed to maximise the presence of each stone, the setting allows light to pass through the diamonds from every angle, while minimising the visible metal. In Dazzling Rendez-Vous the fine gold claws hold the diamonds high, giving an impression that they’re almost floating around the watch case, rather than anchored to it. To complete the case, diamonds are also set into the lugs and the winding crown.
The sumptuous, fully-set bracelet is a masterpiece of the jewellery crafts: Jaeger-LeCoultre’s gem-setters have bezel-set 310 diamonds (22.27 carats), linking them seamlessly together to form a river of diamonds that wraps around the wrist as softly as a ribbon.
The moonlight-white mother-of-pearl dial abounds with subtle details: on an outer ring, diamonds mark the hours; on the main hours ring, each of the applied pink gold numerals is set on a separate mother-of-pearl ’tile’, all anchored by an inner circle of 47 diamonds.
It is a perfect setting for a romantic and lovely moon phase display. Visible through an opening at 6 o’clock, the new design features a shiny mother-of-pearl moon floating against a starry aventurine night sky, and playing hide-and-seek behind a cloud of carved mother-of-pearl as it cycles through its different phases over the course of a month.
Uniting La Grande Maison’s artistic skills with its renowned technical acumen, the Dazzling Rendez-Vous Moon is powered by the Calibre 925/A1 – a self-winding mechanical movement developed and produced in-house and providing a power reserve of 38 hours. The transparent sapphire case-back reveals some fine decoration and finishing in the classical style: blued screws, circular graining, Côtes de Genève and the pink gold signature winding rotor with Côtes de Genève decoration.
The Jaeger-LeCoultre Dazzling Rendez-Vous Moon is a fitting tribute to the beauty of the night sky.