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Fiona Krüger Skull

Prior to establishing Total Watch Reviews I was painting large pictures and exhibiting at prestigious galleries. What enticed me to commentate on the world of horology are the huge parallels with fine art. Not only do mechanical timepieces display an extraordinary amount of detail, they also take a lot of time to produce. In previous articles I have mentioned the level of draftsmanship executed by Martin Frei (Urwerk) and Morten Linde (Linde Werdelin). Recently I discovered another designer who has seamlessly made the transition into the watch industry called Fiona Krüger.

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Fiona Krüger is a Scottish born product designer and fine artist that now resides in La Chaux de Fonds, Switzerland. After gaining her Masters of Advanced Studies in Design for the Luxury Industry she became fascinated with haute horlogerie and the intricate amount of detail involved. Timepieces at this level are more than a means of just telling time and are essentially wrist sculptures. In recent conversations with Fiona she explained that she splits her time between teaching a Masters degree and designing her own range of exquisite watches. So far she has produced two highly exclusive models called the Skull and Skull Black.

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What originally motivated to write an in depth article about the Skull was its idiosyncratic appearance. Every component of the timepiece is entirely manufactured in Switzerland so Fiona can regulate the overall quality. The timepiece measures an imposing 57.4mm x 41.3 mm x 10.3mm, which is definitely designed to make a bold statement. Clearly a watch of this size won’t appeal to more conservative tastes but I love its masculine proportions. Although I haven’t personally worn the timepiece I have tested similar size models from U-Boat and Ritmo Mundo. For that reason I suspect it would sit fairly comfortably on the wrist. This is down to innovative skull shape case and use of 316L stainless steel in production. Normally at this price level I would expect the use of more exotic materials like titanium and ceramic. However in this instance I feel steel suits the style of watch.

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Visually the Skull has a completely unique façade and is unlike any other watch I have ever featured on Total Watch Reviews. What makes this timepiece so incredible is the multi layered skull shape skeletonized dial with Hand-painted gold lacquer décor. This characteristic has been delicately executed and works in perfect harmony with the exposed mechanical movement. Other attractive features include stylized blue galvanized brass hour/minute hands and ornate crown. If handled differently this watch might have appeared gimmicky but fortunately (due to her enormous skill) Fiona has ensured the integrity of the design has not been compromised in any way.

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To power the watch, Fiona has sourced a manual winding twin barrel movement from Swiss manufacturer Technotime. The Caliber TT718 comprises 34-jewels and oscillates at a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour (4Hz). In an ideal world Fiona would have designed a sapphire crystal case back to offer twin views of this superb mechanism. Functionally the Skull features hours, minutes and seconds. The watch also has an impressive power reserve of 120 hours.

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The Skull is limited to only 12 pieces and has a hand-stitched blue calf leather strap with matching steel buckle. Priced for the discerning at: 15,200 CHF (approximately $17,013).

 

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