Launching yesterday evening at Basel World, the World watch and jewelry show in Switzerland, the Hermès Dressage L’heure Masquée has so far been the toast of the event. With a direction of a Time to Dream, Hermès explores another aspect of time with the new timepiece by contemporary Argentine artist, Leandro Erlich. With a constant reflection on space and time, his work echoes the differentiated perceptions afforded by this new creation for the French luxury house. Describing something so simple yet affording it the superlatives it deserves, this new inclusion into Le Montre Hermès collection is just…well, stunning.
The Dressage L’heure masquée watch is a special complication with a dual reading of the time. Primarily, time ticks by in step with the minute hand, beneath which the hours hand remains subtly concealed. A clever and artistic interpretation of the piece, this can be adjusted by a push button which makes the latter appear and show the correct hour. Once the pressure is released, the hours once again vanish beneath the minutes and time resumes its course to the rhythm of the minutes. Poetic and creative, it is these small yet powerful details that make such pieces from the house both decadent yet subtle.
This year, the new Hermès pavilion at Baselworld is a physical representation of the philosophy shared by Hermès and architect Toyo Ito – a philosophy with universal reach. Its design is a testament to Hermès’ fundamental values: craftsmanship, a commitment to work carried out by hand and to the noble elegance of natural materials such as wood, and an appreciation of time, precision and innovation. Strategically positioned on the corner, the entrance appears to cut through the waves like the bow of a ship. This gives visitors an immediate sense the serenity within the atrium. To the left is a staircase in wood and metal takes visitors up to the mezzanine where buyers and clients are invited, yet surrounding the space is naturally dyed fabrics, of which one is close to the famous Orange – produced to traditional Japanese standards. Finally, glass cases dotted around the edge of the room and within the atrium display Hermès’ latest watchmaking creations are indicative of blossoming flowers, showing form and function can be beautiful.