Presenting The 2023 Winners Of The Gaïa Prize

Presenting The 2023 Winners Of The Gaïa Prize

The 2023 edition of the Prix Gaïa pays tribute to watchmaking talents and once again confirms its international significance.

By Watchonista

Since 1993, this award has been presented in recognition of extraordinary careers in the field of watchmaking, as well as in art and culture. The Gaïa Prize award ceremony will be presided over by Luc Debraine, director of the Swiss Camera Museum on Thursday 21 September 2023 (18:00 CET) at the Musée international d'horlogerie (MIH) in La Chaux-de-Fonds. On this occasion, the MIH will once again award the Horizon Gaïa Fellowship, intended for the next generation of researchers.

The unique Prix Gaïa honours the very best: those contributing to the reputation of watchmaking, its history, its technology or its industry. An institution of global renown, the Musée international d'horlogerie in La Chaux-de-Fonds – a city whose economic and social history is closely linked to watchmaking – awards this prize in recognition of the spiritual heirs of watchmaking culture embodied in the museum's collections, and in the city itself.

For the 2023 edition of the Prix Gaïa, the jury has selected four winners across three categories to discover below.

Georges Brodbeck: Winner in the Craftsmanship - Creation Category

The Prix Gaïa jury is paying tribute to Georges Brodbeck the self-taught master of guilloché who, through his love of mechanics, succeeded in reviving this endangered art of watch decoration and who has helped to salvage and restore many machines whose workings he was able to master and convey to others.

Hans Boeckh: Winner in the History - Research Category

The Prix Gaïa jury is paying tribute to Hans Boeckh for his exceptional career, characterised by his humble approach, his capacity to combine the rigour of historical research with knowledge of the subject matter, and his ambition to bring together private and public institutions active in the conservation of collections and heritage.

Miguel Garcia: Winner in the Entrepreneurship Category

The Prix Gaïa jury is paying tribute to Miguel Garcia for his entrepreneurial vision driven by his exceptional values and strength of character, for his industrial approach which has challenged the established order in the field of movement-blank production, and for the phenomenal growth of his company.

Horizon Gaïa: Etienne Curtil

Alongside the three categories used to honour leading figures in the watchmaking world, Horizon Gaïa, an incentive grant made possible thanks to the generosity of the Watch Academy Foundation, is being awarded to encourage new talent in the fields recognised by the Prix Gaïa: Craftsmanship - Creation, History - Research, and Entrepreneurship. The grant will finance all or part of an individual project.

The Horizon Gaïa grant has been awarded to Etienne Curtil, a recent graduate of the Department of History & Philosophy of Science at Université Paris Cité. His Master's thesis, entitled "Mouvement perpétuel et flèche du temps: héritage de la thermodynamique" (Perpetual movement and the arrow of time: the heritage of thermodynamics") aims to develop public communication tools designed to highlight the importance of thermodynamics in the field of watchmaking and timekeeping.

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