Chopard L.U.C XP Esprit de Fleurier Peony
The peony is a motif that the Manufacture honours every year by adopting a 35 mm-diameter ladies’ L.U.C XP watch as a medium of expression.
Each year, Chopard creates a L.U.C XP Esprit by Fleurier Peony timepiece dedicated to the peony, a favourite flower of Chopard co-president Caroline Scheufele. This is a perfect opportunity for the Manufacture to highlight all the crafts that are mastered in its workshops.
On the dial side of the 2019 edition of this timepiece, the bouquet of peonies stands out against the purple dial. A camaieu painting of pink hues, ranging from the palest to the darkest and even verging on purple, contrasts with the tender green of the leaves. The customary shading is replaced by light, since in order to render the depth of the petals, Chopard's Mains d'art have highlighted their details thanks to skilfully hand-cut white mother-of-pearl appliques. An 18-carat rose gold butterfly cannot resist the call and is about to land on the heart of a flower.
L.U.C XP Esprit de Fleurier Peony, 2019 edition © Chopard
The L.U.C Calibre 96-23-L is equipped with patented Twin technology, meaning two stacked coaxial barrels delivering a 65-hour power reserve. Housing such a self-winding movement within an ultra-thin 7.50 mm case is a true feat. It was made possible by an ingenious construction with a micro-rotor that may be admired through the exhibition back. The movement is entirely hand-engraved using the delicate art of Fleurisanne engraving. This decorative technique enjoyed its heyday in the 19th century, when artisans expressed their dedication to perfection by engraving movements with dainty scrolling patterns and floral motifs. The Maison Chopard consequently decided to restore the noble reputation of this patient and accurate art form.
Discovering the engraved movement of an 1870 carriage watch inspired Chopard co-president Karl-Friedrich Scheufele to revive a rare craft and convinced him to engrave some of the L.U.C. movements in the Fleurier style. In the decoration workshops, a woman with truly golden hands offered to teach herself this subtle art, which she now masters perfectly. It is to her that we owe the delicate engraved peonies adorning the movement of this new L.U.C XP Esprit de Fleurier Peony timepiece.
The artist first drew the motif freehand on the movement bridges, subsequently marking it with an engraving tip, before patiently removing the material surrounding it, making the peonies appear, like precious sculptures, in bas-relief. But the picture could not be complete without the profuse foliage that casually teases the beautiful symmetry of the flowers. The background is then finely chased, dot by dot, and the floral motifs are polished. This contrast between the matt material and the brilliant motifs brings the calibre to life and embellishes time.
The diamonds set on the bezel and case middle highlight the work of each craftsman. This timepiece is an alliance of crafts, from the master watchmaker to gemsetters and jewellers, right the way through to the artist who engraves the movement, the painter who creates the miniatures by hand, and all the craftspeople who decorate and polish down to the smallest screw, the tiniest apparently insignificant detail. It takes several weeks of work for Chopard's craftsmen to paint, engrave and decorate each timepiece.
This watch is issued in an eight-piece limited edition and will be sold exclusively in Chopard boutiques.
Maison Chopard epitomises the alliance between watchmaking and jewellery. It has always known how to meet the expectations of its day, relying on four essential values: expertise, tradition, innovation and commitment to philanthropy, whilst working hard to pass on knowhow and skills to future generations.Find out more >
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