Hands-On: Our Favorite Symbolic KERBEDANZ Creations
Since its creation in 2010, the Neuchâtel manufacture has impressed us with their high horology and high jewelry creations. Marrying craftsmanship, beauty, and profound symbolism. This year, Kerbedanz unveils new unparalleled timekeepers to please the most demanding men and women.
In the posh salons of the Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues in Geneva, Kalust Zorik, Kerbedanz’s co-founder, welcomed us with his habitual sparkling cheerfulness. He is about to unveil the latest exceptional pieces coming from his atelier.
Florence, capital of Tuscany. The name itself evokes a certain ‘Art de Vivre’, the beauty of the Renaissance, a secular culture. The eponymous timepiece is a concentrate of this symbolism. The arms of the city can be identified in the indexes at 12, 3, 6 and 9 o’clock: four hand-sculpted, set with large rubies, Lys flowers that are “florencées”, meaning they are a button among their stems. They stand out magnificently against the delicate sun guilloche – reminiscent of the Medicis sun Lion - with a massive white gold dial.
Symbolism is everywhere at Kerbedanz. The face of this Florence is further highlighted by the minute track fully paved with diamonds and rubies. The 43mm 18K yellow gold 3N case, as well as its airy lugs – both designed and manufactured in the atelier – are embedded with diamonds, creating a refined balance. Limited to 68 pieces, the Florence is powered by the mechanical automatically wound caliber KRB-03 which beats at 28,800 vph and delivers 120 hours of power reserve through two barrels. A successful marriage of Renaissance and fine watchmaking.
Fluid high jewelry
There is nothing classical about the Esperanza Classic. The name generates hope, restores faith in the passing of time towards a better, fuller life. This is Kerbedanz’s fundamental approach: providing meaning through the complex symbolism and the beauty of each of their creations. This time the color blue focuses all the attention. The blue of the sky where one projects his dreams or the blue of water, life’s central element. Imagination and interpretation are free for the happy owner of this horological wonder. The guilloche – made by hand, in-house, of course – on the 18K yellow gold dial is dazzling. The waves of intense and soft blue hues start in the center to create an infinite undulating effect.
Movement is perpetual with every ray of light. The transparent enamel sublimates the dial. It is mesmerizing! The 42mm 18K yellow gold case is fully set with 9.69 ct blue sapphires evoking a dark blue sky or deep seas and the 0.37ct diamonds of the lugs twinkle around it like appearing stars. Yet another poetic allegory from Kerbedanz on the wrist. Once more the KRB-03 caliber beats with its fine watchmaking characteristics at its heart. Only 41 pieces of this highly elegant timepiece will be produced.
Introduced in 2017, the Kerbedanz Maximus set a precedent as the largest tourbillon in a wristwatch with its 27mm diameter cage (read more here). Initially born in titanium, its superlative 49mm case is now available in 18K rose gold and in an ultimate white gold version fully set with diamonds. Kalust unveils the latter with its luxury case: a crocodile briefcase sitting on the coffee table of the posh salon.
Kalust unveils the latter with its luxury case: a crocodile briefcase sitting on the coffee table of the posh salon. As soon as it is open, the watchmaking masterpiece shines bright. We hold it with deference. We can then marvel at the finesse of the invisible setting of the baguette cut diamonds that adorn the flanks, the bezel, the lugs, the flange and the indexes of the dial. The lavish elegance highlights even further the powerful giant central flying tourbillon which gently makes his revolution in 6 minutes.
The mechanical manually wound caliber KRB-08, entirely developed, manufactured and finished in Kerbedanz’s atelier, powers the phenomenon at a 2.5Hz frequency. The high horology finishing can be admired through the sapphire case-back, as well as the four barrels providing 54 hours of power reserve to this monumental timepiece. Only 14 examples will be made. They will all be unique as the complex manual stone-setting will be different each time. A true masterpiece of watchmaking and jewelry.
Once more Kerbedanz shows the range of its crafts mastered internally: a concentrate of craftsmanship for ultimate exclusivity.
(Photography by Pierre Vogel)