As well as writing books and articles for my website and international magazines I also love designing watches. Originally my first prototype called the Polaris was an experiment to get a clearer insight of how the watch industry works. However, it now has become more of a passion and I have recently completed several timepieces (under the label Paolo Mathai Horology). A few months ago my Kaleidoscopic watch was featured on Roberta Naas’s wonderful blog ‘A Timely Perspective‘
I am very focused on collaborations because I feel they yield some very exciting results. Therefore, both of my watches were co-designed by a Jet engineer (Frank Heydrich) and watchmaker (Ben Birkett). I also had a very interesting meeting with a renowned Architect who shares my passion for horology. The progressive modernistic properties he creates would easily translate into sophisticated watch designs. Most of the properties he has developed for clients use materials like concrete to the maximum effect. This is why he was intrigued by the 4D Concrete Watch Automatic from 22 Design Studio.
The name 22 Design Studio was chosen by owners Sean and Yiting because they were only 22 when they founded the company. Essentially this Taipei based creative platform is inspired by contemporary architecture. That is why all their products are constructed from concrete, glass and steel. Recently the brand has released a Swiss automatic version (powered by a Sellita SW200-1 movement) of their popular 4D Concrete Watch. Certainly, I was really keen to get my hands on this amazing timepiece and was not disappointed when it arrived.
Dimensionally the 4D Concrete Watch has a diameter of 45mm but actually appears much smaller. Ultimately this is because of the aesthetically pleasing contoured case (which sits perfectly on the wrist) and ingenious lug less design. Within the range, there are two different models called the Minimal and Signature Editions. Both of these versions are also available in brushed brass or stainless steel. I chose to review the Signature Edition in brushed steel because I felt the overall design was more cohesive. However, all of the timepieces have attractive features like multi-layered concrete dials, 3-dimensional bespoke hands, Cyclops magnified date window and stylized crowns.
Without any doubt, the 4D Signature Edition Concrete Watch is a brilliant example of modern product design and really competitively priced at $774. For more information about this amazing timepiece follow this link