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Czapek - From the Land of the Rising Sun to a World of Light

Czapek From the Land of the Rising Sun to a World of Light

Czapek & Cie plays on its sporty chic appeal with two new dials to complement its sleek 38.5mm case

In keeping with the Czapek ethos, the new dials introduce atypical colours, intriguing textures and fascinating details. With a contemporary twist on traditional crafts and materials, and a new approach to texture, each dial has been designed to capture the light in a particular way, creating a sense of movement and vitality through a play of constantly changing colours.

The ‘Sashiko’ dial pays homage to the geometric lines and three-dimensionality of the traditional Japanese stitching of the same name, developed in Japan during the Edo period. The three-dimensional stamped pattern – based on a stylised lotus flower spotted and chosen by Marie-Alix de Roquemaurel – is achieved by repeating squares set at 45 degrees to perpendicular, each comprising six facets. As the light plays across the dial, the lotus pink appears to alternate between a pure, almost sugary tone and a soft hint of mauve, while the blue dial changes from the clear colour of a springtime sky to the greyer tone of autumn.

From the Land of the Rising Sun to a World of Light

Sashiko Pink Lotus © Czapek

Contrasting with the intricate texture of the dial, a velvet-brushed ring lends a ‘visual quietness’ as the backdrop for the indexes. Simpler than the Antarctique’s signature sporty indexes, these finely sculpted, very elongated trapezoids lend an elegant refinement to the new dial. On request, each of the cardinal points can be marked by a diamond, cut to closely mimic the geometry of the steel indexes.

From the Land of the Rising Sun to a World of Light

Sashiko Azure © Czapek

La ‘Carte des Nuages’ (literally, the Cloud Map) dial plays with the rich glow of white or grey mother-of-pearl, offsetting it with a glittering pair of ‘Antarctique cut’ diamonds marking 12, and a Princess cut diamond set at each of the 11 other hours. Etched into the surface, six fine guilloché gridlines anchor the composition, in a playfully modern take on the traditional craft of guillochage – with a subtle allusion to cartography. Taken from the central and most lustrous part of the oyster shell, the wafer-thin discs of mother-of-pearl used for these dials are rarely guilloché due to their fragility; to do so requires a highly specialised skill that only a few Maisons are able to source. 

From the Land of the Rising Sun to a World of Light

Carte des Nuages © Czapek

This exuberant and dressed-up expression of the Antarctique S also wears diamonds on the bezel, integrated lugs and first ‘C’ link of the bracelet, and a reverse-set diamond caps the winding crown. The sophisticated mix of steel and diamonds complements the visual depth and shape-shifting lustre of mother-of-pearl dial. 

Both the Sashiko and Carte des Nuages dials feature the signature Antarctique S sword-shaped hands, while eschewing the added visual complexity of the date display seen on previous Antarctique S dials. The ‘Antarctique cut’ of the elongated index markers is an entirely new diamond cut, designed for Czapek by Adrian Buchmann of London-based studio Fuzion Ltd, and registered as a proprietary Czapek cut. 

From the Land of the Rising Sun to a World of Light

Carte des Nuages © Czapek

Beneath the new dials, the Antarctique S is powered by calibre SXH5, the first movement to be entirely conceived and assembled in house by Czapek. It was launched in the original Antarctique in May 2020. Inspired by the 19th-century pocket watches of François Czapek, its distinctive architecture of seven skeletonised bridges is immediately recognisable. Taking the best from both the past and present of watchmaking, it features a free-sprung balance and an elegant and highly efficient micro-rotor of recycled 950 platinum; the haute horlogerie finishes combine hand-bevelled internal angles with state-of-the-art laser engraving to create a beautiful play of contrasts: light and dark, textured and smooth, matte and polished.


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Czapek & Cie. harks back to the origins of one of the watch industry’s most prestigious names, which was born from the watchmaking skills of two Polish émigrés who sought refuge in Switzerland after Poland’s November uprising. 

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