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Bovet - Bovet Grand Récital, lunar scenography

Bovet Bovet Grand Récital, lunar scenography

For the third year in a row, Bovet presents a watch with an astronomical grand complication. This time it’s centred on the Moon. But the Récital 22 has not forgotten the Earth either.

First came the Shooting Star, dedicated to the Earth, as seen from above with the time zones depicted on the globe. Then, in 2017, came the Astérium and the night sky. It was the start of a line of Bovet timepieces that tackle our relationship with the planets, our own natural satellite and our own planet. What they both had in common was their presentation. Both had asymmetric cases, thicker at 12 o’clock than 6 o’clock, and were inclined towards the observer, like a writing desk. They both display functions on either side of the case and they are both, of course, equipped with tourbillons, which is the speciality and the very origins of the Bovet manufacture, located in Tramelan in the Franches Montagnes region of Switzerland.

Bovet Grand Récital, lunar scenography

Récital 22 Grand Récital ©marcgysinphoto

Récital 22, also known as Grand Récital, is no exception to these rules and continues a story that the people at Bovet assure us is still far from its final chapter. This time, the timepiece tackles the theme of what is found between the Earth and the sky: the moon. Five patents were filed during the development of its movement. A three-dimensional lunar globe rotates about a terrestrial globe (which takes an entire week to hand paint), taking in all the known moon phases, which are indicated on a disc, from the waxing crescent moon to the full moon and back. The time is indicated by a pointer at the bottom of this globe, which is read against a 24-hour scale. The retrograde minutes are close by at 9 o’clock. Opposite the minutes is a power reserve indicator that goes up to nine days, another Bovet speciality. At the bottom of this front dial is a flying tourbillon in the Bovet style, in other words with a bridge that holds it in place from the centre, rather from underneath. This makes the tourbillon double-sided and gives it a unique aspect: the bridge for the carriage is a radiating sun with an engraved centre. The Earth, the Moon, the Sun – in other words the three fundamental heavenly bodies – are all there, both symbolic and functional.

Bovet Grand Récital, lunar scenography

Récital 22 Grand Récital ©marcgysinphoto

One final and intriguing detail on this side is a magnifier, cut into the sapphire crystal, show the date alongside the tourbillon. This magnifier gives the impression that the date is very deep, almost on the other side of the watch… But turn the watch over and you understand. Grand Récital has a detailed back, even more so than its predecessors. The first thing that stands out is a retrograde date ring, which is part of a perpetual calendar complication. The ring is huge and consists of a glass disc whose circumference is metallised and bears the numbers. We can therefore deduce that they are transferred on to both sides of the disc, so that they can also be read from the other side. This complex panorama is completed by a small aperture that indicates the hour, without the minutes, taking the information from the front side and reversing it and giving this side of the Grand Récital timekeeping autonomy.

The perpetual calendar is a classic complication but it is not always an accomplished one. Sometimes there can be too many pushers, too many constraints on setting it, both of which make it unergonomic. Bovet has come up with a solution that combines flexibility with ease of use. All the indications are synchronised and therefore move in unison when a discreet corrector at 12 o’clock is pressed. But, if you accidentally move ahead of the current date, rather than having to wait for the watch to stop to catch up with the calendar, you can also use individual correctors for each indication in the conventional way.

Bovet Grand Récital, lunar scenography

Récital 22 Grand Récital ©marcgysinphoto

Only 60 Grand Récital movements will be produced, which the customer can choose to have in a rose gold or platinum case, with or without diamonds. But the Grand Récital will also be available in titanium. The weight saving is considerable for this 46mm diameter watch, which makes it surprisingly comfortable on the wrist for such an imposing watch.

The brand

The Bovet Manufacture upholds the tradition of decorative arts applied to its delicately engraved, chased, enamelled, engine-turned or hand-painted cases, dials and movements, thus passing on the unrivalled knowhow that has been gracing the Firm’s collections and heritage since 1822.

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