A few weeks ago I noticed some absolutely wonderful sculptures fabricated from recycled materials. These structures are an imposing 6 feet in height and depict Pelican birds. As I love eclectic designs I did a bit of research to find out the name and origin of the artist. Interestingly he is a native of the United States and goes by the alias of Indiana James. About twenty years ago he emigrated to South Australia and now resides in a place called Kangaroo Island. What makes his work so impressive is that he pays a lot of attention to anatomical detail. This means that some of his avian creations are actually built around a skeleton body. When I informed Indiana that I was passionate about mechanical watches he was fascinated. The two art forms share a lot of similarities because the intricacy involved.
Recently I received a press release from luxury watchmaker Romain Gauthier. He was promoting his latest creation called the Logical one Secret Kakau Höfke. This watch is truly amazing and a great example of this wonderful ateliers talents. Previously I have only featured Romain (on Total Watch Reviews) in themed articles like ‘Highlights from 2013’ and Baselworld 2013’ I also missed out on meeting him in person at Baselworld 2015 because of a hectic schedule.
Romain Gauthier began his career working as a machine programmer/operator for a horological components manufacturer. He then passed his MBA and set about establishing his own label in 2005. Within a few years he won an award (Best Men’s Complications Watch) for his outstanding ‘Logical one’ at the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève. This amazing honour has exceptionally raised his profile and gained him the enormous respect of his contemporaries. It has also enabled him to be more experimental and create beautiful timepieces like the Logical one Secret Kakau Höfke.
Visually the Logical one Secret Kakau Höfke (in my opinion) is by far his most distinctive watch to date. The works of renowned Brazilian artist Kakau Höfke have inspired the overall aesthetic of the timepiece. Essentially Romain Gauthier has tried to replicate one of Kakau Höfke’s modernistic paintings on a miniature scale. The piece in question is an acrylic study of the Corcovado Mountain and ‘Christ the Redeemer’ statue in Rio de Janeiro. He has achieved this by employing the talents of specialist stone marquetry expert Olivier Vaucher. This company has meticulously laid 352 individual lavender jade and blue agate tiles by hand. The results are absolutely astonishing and make this unique 1/1 watch a highly collectable item. Other details include sublime 18-karat skeleton hour/minute hands and a small sub counter.
Beneath the 43mm 18-karat white gold exterior lies a brilliant patented (chain-and-fusee style constant force system) in house developed mechanical movement. This calibre comprises 71-jewels (37 for the movement, 34 for the chain) and oscillates at a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour. Each of the 357 individual components has been hand bevelled and polished to the highest possible standard. Functionally the Logical one Secret Kakau Höfke features hours, minutes and seconds. The timepiece also has a power reserve of 46-hours and is water resistant to a depth of 30-metres.
The Logical one Secret Kakau Höfke has a hand stitched alligator strap with matching 18-karat white gold pin buckle.