Jaquet Droz | Tribute to the brand founder
Issued in an eight-piece edition to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the founder Pierre Jaquet-Droz, the Bird Repeater, an automaton with a minute repeater, embodies the essence of the House. Its dial in white mother-of-pearl and black onyx features appliqués in 18K red gold. Multiple bird animations, eggs hatching and the river in the background breathe life into this creation. These intricately interwoven animations, entirely engraved and painted by hand, are enlivened by the sound of a minute repeater, which is housed at the heart of its 47mm 18K red gold case, one of fine watchmaking’s most virtuoso complications.
For this anniversary edition, Jaquet Droz returns to the theme of nature to animate its automatons. In the foreground are two robins, one male and one female, like those that can be seen and heard all around the Swiss Valleys, known for their song and closeness to mankind. In the background, to the right, is a farmhouse. It is not however just any farmhouse, but a replica of the one where Pierre Jaquet-Droz was born exactly 300 years ago. This historical nod is counter-balanced on the left side by a verdant valley with a river flowing through it. It is once again no coincidence that the latter is in fact La Ronde which winds its way around the valley in which the town of La Chaux-de-Fonds nestles. There is a Gentian flower in the foreground, whose especially fine wood grain is used by watchmakers for the ultimate polishing of their components. The plant is also used for its medicinal values and alcoholic beverages that have contributed to the region’s success.
Left, right and centre, the natural characteristics of La Chaux-de-Fonds are present: red berries and holly leaves, a blue butterfly announcing the arrival of summer and other animals hidden in the scene. A dragonfly can also be spotted, a symbol of strength and fighting spirit, along with a grasshopper whose powerful leap forward embodies risk-taking, the ability to seize opportunities and move ahead, much like Jaquet Droz does today, while drawing on three centuries of heritage to move forward in the 21st century built on art and wonders.