COUTUREtime 2019: Parmigiani Fleurier Returns To Their Roots

COUTUREtime 2019: Parmigiani Fleurier Returns To Their Roots

At COUTUREtime 2019, Parmigiani Fleurier began a decisive return to their origins. Here's a look at this unique positioning which is spearheaded by the Toric collection.

By Marco Gabella
Chairman & Executive Publisher

Unlike other watch brands that were founded centuries ago, Parmigiani Fleurier’s story began just over 20 years ago. This reality seems paradoxical because the timepieces produced by this manufacture seem to be part of the watchmaking classicism inherited from the innovators of the 17th and 18th century. To understand this particularity, we must look back to the very reasons for the brand's creation.

From Restoration to Contemporary Traditions

Since the early 2000s, several new watch brands have emerged thanks to an incredible revival in the interest of mechanical watchmaking which has led to the phenomenal growth of the market. Parmigiani Fleurier hasn't been given enough credit for creating and exploiting this opportunity.

Initially, Michel Parmigiani had a workshop dedicated to watchmaking restoration which took care of watches from the Sandoz collection. Few had this skill acquired through a long process of understanding the gestures and techniques of the past. From this meeting came the idea of a brand that could interpret in a contemporary way the legacy of master watchmakers, a knowledge which partially disappeared with industrialization.

Today, this unique vocation of Parmigiani Fleurier is perfectly reflected in the Ovale Pantographe model. The inspiration for this exceptional piece with telescopic hands comes directly from the restoration of a pocket watch dating back to 1870. The idea was not to display a playful animation but to honor the past in an execution inspired by the present day.

The Toric Collection: A Return To The Brand's Roots

In 2018, Parmigiani Fleurier launched the Toric model, directly inspired by one of the first creations of the brand. With its finely fluted bezel and extremely recognizable hands, this watch gives an updated vision of watchmaking tradition. With the Toric Chronometre we see a three-hand date model with has attained the demanding certification of "Fleurier Quality."

This first time in the US showing of these Toric novelties has spawned a real collection of excessively refined executions. During COUTUREtime 2019, the Toric Quantieme Perpetuel Retrograde particularly caught our attention.

First, the Parmigiani Fleurier Toric Retrograde Perpetual Calendar whose balance and readability are of rare accuracy. The hand guilloched dial gives an incredible depth to the indications of the QP. The counters are subtly circled in pink gold and the moon phase stands out against an aventurine background. The elegance of this watch is undeniable.

The Parmigiani Fleurier Toric Hemisphères Retrograde is without a doubt one of the most original travel watches on the market. Unlike a typical GMT, the second time zone is elegantly displayed in a sub-dial with two separate hands. Two 24-hour indicators make it easy to understand if it's the time of the day or night.

The innovation lies in the past. By taking up dialogues from the past and applying them to the present, Parmigiani Fleurier cultivates a difference by offering a uniquely contemporary vision of classicism. With this singular approach, the brand refines its identity and offers fans of fine watchmaking a unique approach to classicism.

(Photography by Liam O'Donnell)

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