Luxury watchmakers RJ-Romain Jerome have commemorated the maison’s dual passion for watchmaking and contemporary art in a stunning new collaboration with renowned Swiss artist John M Armleder. The company have unveiled Art-DNA; a collection of ten watches which feature a skull, a recurring motif found in Armleder’s works.
Armleder was inspired by the skulls which feature prominently in the art and culture of Amerindians. Here, the skull was incorporated as an applique on the dials of these hammered, polished steel timepieces. The appliques on each of the ten piece have a lacquered underside in a color only revealed when light hits the dial as the watch is moved. Each of the individually numbered watches features a different color, in addition to an engraved medallion bearing Armleder’s signature.
Manuel Emch, the CEO of RJ-Romain Jerome, was passionate about the Art-DNA collaboration, being himself a keen collector of contemporary art. ″I had since long wished to combine my twin passions for contemporary art and watchmaking, and to apply the principle of a unique work of art to a limited-edition watch″, explains Manuel Emch. ″Given the brand’s origins, it was important to me to work with a Swiss artist and my own admiration for John M Armleder’s work and his status as a role model for young artists meant that my choice was quickly made!″
For his part, Armleder explained that ″the skull evokes a memento mori and an allegory of the passing of time, which is an appropriate subject for a timepiece and which interests both art and watch collectors. All these watches that give the impression of looking alike are ideally suited to death, which is basically the same for everyone, but which takes place differently each time.″
Source and photos courtesy RJ-Romain Jerome press release.