If You Love Independent Watchmaking, You Wouldn’t Want To Miss The Hour Glass’ Virtual Showcase

As renowned as the famous watch maisons are, there is a special place in the hearts of horology enthusiasts reserved for independent watchmakers. Unburdened by heritage, have a flexibility, daring and innovation that no large company can match, and are free to dedicate themselves to the purist artistry of independent watchmaking. It is a spirit that recalls the very beginnings of Swiss watchmaking.

Philippe Dufour Duality #06 (1997), Duality Prototype #00 (1996), Albert Piguet Double Lever Escapement (1933).

Shedding light on this rarefied craft is The Persistence of Memory, an online exhibition hosted by The Hour Glass. The Singapore-based retailer is a fixture in the Southeast Asian horological community, and champions some of the most respected independent brands today, such as MB&F, Kari Voutilainen, and Urwerk.

F.P. Journe Chronometre a Resonance Platinum (2000), Chronometre a Resonance in Platinum and Rose Gold (2020).

The exhibition covers the last fifty or so years of the modern era of independent watchmaking. It begins in 1970 with the work of George Daniels and David Pratt, contemporaries and visionaries that are hallowed figures today and who defined and exposed the potential of independent watchmaking. The exhibition then moves on to the current personalities who dominate today’s space, such as Dennis Flageollet (co-founder of De Bethune), Kari Voutilainen, Philippe Dufour, and Francois-Paul Journe. Rounding out the exhibits are younger names who are still carving out their own niche – the likes of Roger Smith and Rexhep Rexhepi (of Akrivia fame).

Rexhep Rexhepi Chronometre Contemporain Platinum (2020), Pink Gold (2018).

“This survey has been a project that has been fermenting for several years now and I couldn’t have been happier with its outcome. We assembled some 150 of the finest examples of artisanal watchmaking of this period including two of George Daniels’ masterworks – the Space Traveller and the Grand Complication. Many of these watches were on loan from important private collections as well as from the artisans themselves,” said Michael Tay, Group Managing Director of The Hour Glass and exhibition curator. 

George Daniels Space Traveller (1982) and Grand Complication (1987).

“Due to the pandemic and safe distancing restrictions, we were required to innovate and realised this exhibition via our bespoke online viewing room,” he continues. “This OVR platform is highly immersive in that it allows for thorough storytelling accompanied by precise macro photographs of the watches – something I’m certain the global enthusiast community will appreciate.” 

The Persistence of Memory runs online from 11 March, 8 pm at The Hour Glass

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