Hysek A butterfly in the snow
After the phenomenally complicated Colossal, Hysek is now flexing its jewellery muscles with a new version of the Kalysta.
We haven’t yet had all four seasons from Hysek, but it probably won’t be long. The manufacture has just announced a stunning winter version of its women’s Kalysta collection, which was first unveiled at Baselworld in 2016.
The approach taken by Hysek is very close in spirit to that of Christophe Claret: it’s a young company (20 years old), now an integrated manufacture, 100% independent, producing extremely sophisticated complications, and with a deliberately disruptive attitude.
For Christophe Claret, it was the Margot. For Hysek it’s the Kalysta. As we have come to expect, Hysek’s creativity is the product of great refinement, built upon the maturity of a collection that boasts of being the first women’s range developed 100% in-house. Its main theme is the butterfly. The etymology is from Ancient Greek kallisto, literally “the most beautiful”, with a twist to make the word more feminine.
One watch, two talents
Hysek’s primary talent is its pure watchmaking expertise. The movement of the Kalysta, which is the same used for the entire collection, is 100% manufacture. Its two signature features are a jumping hour and a trailing minute that travels around the bezel, which together ensure that the mechanical Kalysta watches don’t need any hands. The current hour is displayed in a window at 12 o’clock, while the minutes are marked off around the perimeter of the dial with a marquise-cut ruby, diamond or sapphire. The handless dial thus offers Hysek a broad canvas on which to express its creativity. The first Kalysta featured a powder-coated opaline dial with a finely-etched motif.
Hysek has now unveiled the “Snowflake” variation, which brings a second talent to this youthful collection: High Jewellery. The first seeds were already sown in 2016. The Kalysta was already clearly a masterclass in style, going beyond mechanical construction to look at form, brilliance and emotion. The snow-set bezel of the early models offered a foretaste of the manufacture’s jewellery vision. With the Snowflake, the vision has become a reality.
Kalysta Snowflake, rose gold models. © Hysek
The art of representing a snowflake in diamonds
This time, the dial is entirely given over to a bejewelled tableau. Two versions of this model are expected to be revealed in the coming days, in rose gold and titanium. In both cases, the manufacture has enlarged its field of view to focus not just on the butterfly alone, but also on the image of a snowflake, which radiates majestically from the centre of the dial.
The stylistic exercise is stunning, but the technical execution is equally so. The snowflake motif is extremely complex, the larger central jewels giving way to smaller gems as the arms of the figure split and diverge.
Kalysta Snowflake, titanium models. © Hysek
In terms of gem-setting, this sophisticated jewellery creation is made possible by a lacy honeycomb comprising several hundred tiny holes into which the gems are inserted one by one. The white mother-of-pearl background is meticulously carved to hug each curve of the lacework.
Finally, the snow-set bezel that proved so successful on the first Kalysta watches is back. The Haute Joaillerie version of the Snowflake also has a ribbon of diamonds set around the case band. On the wrist, the Snowflake gives the impression of being fully paved with diamonds. Innovation, style and creativity: all the hallmarks of Hysek.
close-up on the gem-setting © Hysek
The firm’s foundational principles are avant-gardism and technical prowess. Each new timepiece is not simply the modification of an existing aesthetic model, but is completely designed from scratch. This perpetual calling into question leads to the creation of extremely audacious and contemporary timepieces.Find out more >
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