Including a unique opal piece, these latest interpretations embody the legacy of Jaquet Droz: the Art of Astonishment.
As part of its 280th anniversary celebrations Jaquet Droz has unveiled exclusive new editions of its Loving Butterfly Automaton. First presented in 2017, this creation pays homage to signature themes of the brand: lyricism, naturalism and the art of watchmaking. The automaton is true to the brand’s history. It honors the two-centuries-old story of a genius watchmaker, Henri-Louis Jaquet-Droz, and his android automaton that drew breathtaking sketches. One sketch was of a cherub in a chariot drawn by a butterfly, celebrating love and passion.
This motif has been recreated on a 43 mm timepiece with a new choice of dials in meteorite (28 pieces), aventurine (28 pieces) and opal (unique diamond-set piece). The Jaquet Droz Art of Astonishment takes center stage in a new palette of tones and contrasts in which nature and emotions play starring roles.
The attention to detail is unrivaled. Each element is hand-crafted. Each tree spans a mere 0.2 mm, its slender grooves carved using purpose designed tools. The butterfly, like the chariot, is composed of several dozen fixed and mobile appliques carved by artisan jewelers. The motif is staged in a theater of nature, the set emerging from either side of the dial. Multiple levels lend the piece a unique depth of perspective that invites the gaze to wander, drift and stray. A striking realism takes shape, proliferating with details that bring the scene to life.
The meteorite dial version features an animated composition in red gold, alongside hour and minute hands on an onyx background. Shades of gray, gold and black lend new depth to the animated scene by Jaquet Droz. In the foreground a butterfly beats its wings, drawing a chariot behind it. The wheels, too, are in motion. The standing cherub evokes Pierre Jaquet-Droz, who also set off to explore the world in his day.
The second Loving Butterfly Automaton features white gold and mother-of-pearl on an aventurine dial. Like a dream of a starry sky, this composition places the cherub and butterfly before a shimmering silver Moon, symbolized by the mother-of-pearl watch dial whose tones are echoed in the diamond setting of the bezel and lugs.
The final opal dial version gleams with an unprecedented richness of color. Blues and greens compose a bright, colorful canvas for the red gold of the trees, cherub, chariot and butterfly. The hours and minutes dial at 12 o’clock is set with baguette-cut diamonds throughout, in an invisible setting. They are arranged in a sunray pattern, allowing this one-of-a-kind piece to glitter and shimmer in a blazing aura of gold, opal and diamond.
Each of the compositions draws on the Jaquet Droz codes: automatons, Ateliers d’Art, exceptional mechanisms, mineral dials and numerus clausus. The butterfly, steered by the hand of love, carries the cherub toward new creative horizons whose foundations were laid by the Jaquet Droz family exactly 280 years ago. This anniversary grants the brand an opportunity to celebrate its creative genius, with the figure of the butterfly symbolizing the fleeting nature of time as much as the power of love, ascending to lofty new heights.