The rhythms of the water, the reflections of the sky and sun on the surface of the sea, in myriad shades of blue, shining through in the currents, waves and tides... The one-off Anywhere Only Watch 2023 proposes an ideal of serene artistry and technical sophistication – time as an intimate connection with our blue planet.
With an absolute mastery of technique, materials and know-how, Krayon again shows its commitment to preserving the high level of craftsmanship which, for over four centuries, has defined high watchmaking and timepiece decoration. Is it not by cultivating these ancestral techniques, by reinterpreting them with a contemporary vision, that we can ensure they will endure far into the future?
Krayon reiterates its invitation to contemplate the natural elements, to take an inner journey, by reinterpreting the form and movement of a marvellous painting, Coastal Scene by the Belgian painter Théo van Rysselberghe. Magnificent in its simplicity and, paradoxically, in its detail, this painting, exhibited at the National Gallery in London as an example of the neo-impressionist movement, brings shapes and motion startlingly to life using the technique of pointillism.
Krayon had previously explored the technique of miniature painting – where each colour is deposited by hand in tiny cells hollowed out of the metal – to create a work of incredible refinement for the 2021 edition of Only Watch. This time, Krayon again keeps the colour blue and explores the very intricate and precise technique of pointillism, as inspired by Théo van Rysselberghe’s painting.
The artist’s perceptiveness with minute brushstrokes, the paint deposited in small, skilful touches, giving almost imperceptible reliefs to this ‘canvas dial’, the rich palette of a multitude of shades of blue, the reflection of the sky on the waves, the light caressing their surface, creating contrasts to reveal a myriad sparkles… In a masterfully controlled circular movement, the dial reveals an exceptional creation, honouring age-old techniques by calling on the rare specialists who still hold their secrets today.
The technical prowess of the movement and the artistic sensibility of the dial: this watch born of the vision of watch designer Rémi Maillat, founder of Krayon, keeps alive time-honoured Swiss traditions, while delighting connoisseurs and lovers of refinements that have become only too rare.
With the tip of his pencil, Rémi Maillat, watchmaking engineer and founder of the brand, transforms unimagined concepts into real complexities of watchmaking art. His Anywhere creation indicates the length of the day and the time at which the sun rises and sets, while displaying the ephemeris at a point on the globe chosen personally by the wearer of the watch, placing them at the centre of a universal yet intimate watchmaking experience.
This emotional dimension of time and space, at the intersection of subjective and objective geography, is where Krayon lives. Its interpretation of time takes the form of a watch that goes beyond convention and habit. Like mornings and evenings, never the same, always experienced in a personal way.
A unique piece created for the Only Watch 2023 charity auction, Anywhere Only Watch 2023 represents a 432-component ideal of serene artistry and technical sophistication. Following through on the Anywhere Only Watch 2021 Edition, its exceptional dial blends engineering prowess with contemporary artistic inspiration.
This year, in hues of a multitude of blues, colour enhances purpose on the Anywhere watch, like an invitation to contemplation in the time before the sun rises or sets, as it shines with a thousand flashes of light on the surface of the water. This magical moment when nature, in suspension, awaits or relinquishes the light.
Art as an ode to nature. Krayon celebrates the natural elements through Anywhere Only Watch 2023, a timepiece designed to beguile collectors and lovers of rare refinements in search of a singular complication – the indication of sunrises and sunsets, at the precise location chosen by the wearer, anywhere in the world.
If its ingenuity and engineering prowess already suffice to set apart this hyper-complication, a bespoke ephemeris intimately linked to its wearer, the modernity of a case made of grade 5 titanium and the refinement of its pointillist dial truly make it a one-of-a-kind watch. An elegant timepiece that once again demonstrates, not only through the highest degree of hand-finishing, all the expertise of the independent Swiss watchmaker.
Collectors and connoisseurs have always considered watches with dates or astronomical indications to be masterpieces of mechanical engineering not only because of their level of complexity, but also because their calendar displays are directly derived from astronomical observations made since the earliest civilisations.
For those who grasp its full scope, a calendar watch is a link with the cosmos, a connection all the more symbolic by the deep horological science behind it. The calendar is a mechanical solution to an astronomical problem. From ancient Egypt to Greece to Rome, from astronomers to mathematicians, and high priests, too, the history of the calendar has mainly revolved around the question of fitting the lunar and solar calendars into a scheme of whole numbers.
Anywhere Only Watch 2023 indicates the hours and minutes by means of two hands placed at the centre of a dial that floats in the middle of the watch. It is surrounded by an annular display upon which circulates, in perpetual motion, a small sun that indicates the time over 24 hours. The ring-shaped zone consists of two sectors: a day sector (azure blue) and a night sector (dark blue), whose respective arc lengths indicate the sunrise and sunset times which can be read on the réhaut or flange.
To integrate the geographical factor, Krayon devised a mechanical positioning system, using rakes and rockers instead of a fixed cam. The relative position of the two sapphire discs is determined not only by the reference position, but also by the calendar. To this end, Anywhere shows the date and month in a subsidiary dial at 6 o'clock.
It is a double calendar, with all months counting 31 days. It therefore requires only five quick, simple annual adjustments, made directly with the crown, in both directions. While these sources of inspiration are rooted in the past, Rémi Maillat has reinterpreted, even transcended them with a contemporary vision.
Krayon’s Anywhere Only Watch 2023 is brought to life by the Calibre C030, a movement meticulously designed, developed and entirely assembled in Neuchatel, Switzerland by Rémi Maillat, Krayon's founding watchmaker. It is the successor to the one developed for the model presented at the Only Watch charity auction in 2021.
With its (apparent) simplicity, width and slimness (only 5 mm), the movement’s manual winding mechanism and technical sophistication (432 components, 72 hours of operation) holds a particular fascination, surprising the beholder with the ability to define a point in space and time, geographically and temporally, to which only they are connected.
True to a principle dear to Rémi Maillat, the wearer is given the ability to set the watch to the city or place of their choice with regard to the sunrise and sunset times at that precise location.
Rémi Maillat, a watchmaking designer-engineer, is the founder of Krayon. His is a precious talent: the ability to turn mathematical calculations into fantastic watchmaking creations, with the self-evidence that comes from simplicity. Whether he is working on commissions for renowned clients or giving shape and substance to his own imagination, this gifted engineer masters the technical complexities of the art of watchmaking. For Rémi Maillat, a successful concept begins as a sketch at the tip of his pencil; hence Krayon, as in crayon, the French word for pencil.
After introducing his first Everywhere creation in June 2017, Rémi Maillat presented a bespoke creation in 2018, Everywhere Horizon; that same year it was awarded the Best Watchmaking Innovation Prize by the Jury of the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève.
In 2020, Rémi Maillat, true to the concept of the art of the singular measurement of time, unveiled Anywhere: a marvellous synthesis of mathematics, watchmaking artistry and poetry in details with a genuinely philosophical dimension.
2021 marked Krayon’s first ever participation in the Only Watch charity auction: Anywhere Métiers d'Art, the one-off watch created specifically for the event – it featured a magnificent sunset by Claude Monet – sold for four times its estimate.
In 2022, the Krayon brand presented a new opus, Anywhere Métiers d'Art Azur, produced in only 15 pieces. The watch, with a mesmerising dial in shades of blue – myriad miniature touches of paint in tiny cells carved into the metal – is an invitation to escape, to discover and to dream.
Also in 2022, four years after winning the “Best Watchmaking Innovation Prize” in 2018, Krayon won the “Calendar and Astronomy Prize” at the Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix for its second watch creation, Anywhere.
In 2023, Krayon again submitted a timepiece specifically created for the Only Watch charity auction. The dial of the one-off Anywhere Only Watch 2023 magnifies the technique of pointillism, a miniature painting handmade by a passionate artist from La Chaux-de-Fonds, which reinterprets the painting Coastal Scene by Théo van Rysselberghe exhibited at London’s National Gallery.