[:it]The partnership between Perpetual Passion and RedBar Milano gets off to a great start. On 9 July, in the refined setting of Terrazza Calabritto restaurant in Milan, we gathered with friends and enthusiasts to greet us before the desired holidays, to share our passion with an exceptional guest directly from Switzerland!
For the first time in our spotlight we had the pleasure of welcoming Rémi Maillat, founder of Crayon, a truly amazing independent brand.
To accompany him his masterpiece, theEVERYWHERE: the first and, for now, the only watch produced by the house, in a version with black dial, hand-engraved case with bezel and pines embellished with baguette diamonds.
For those who do not know this precious timepiece, what distinguishes it is the complication that it mounts. TheEverywhere on Crayons in fact it is the first watch animated by the USS caliber (Universal Sunset Sunrise), che allows you to know the time at which the sun rises and sets in every part of the world, unlike theEquation of Time, "programmed" to provide these indications only about a precise location. In addition, the watch, currently competing in the GPHG among the best complicated watches for men, was conceived to be very simple to read and use, keeping the dimensions acceptable (42mm) and also pleasant for small wrists.
On the occasion of this wonderful event we had the opportunity to interview Rémi as he showed us his latest creation and to let us reveal some of his secrets, even if it was not at all easy....
AC: Good evening Rémie thank you for coming tonight. Let's start with the most emblematic question, from which I always like to start: what is a watch for you, what is its role?
RM: For me a watch, first of all, must transmit emotions. I remember a watchmaker who one day told me that he had sold a lot of pieces to cancer patients and after seeing the happy expressions on their faces he could really define himself satisfied for giving these people a little joy and emotion despite their very bad illness.
AC: Thank you, very nice as an approach! speaking of you instead, how many pieces do you produce per year?
RM: We produce a maximum of five pieces per year, but the number does not count since each piece is produced as a result of an order, so it depends on the customers.
Ac:... And how did it all start?
RM: I am an engineer, at Le Locle I studied engineering to design watches. To complete the design of my first movement it took me 18 months instead of 6, it was a very simple three hands (hours, minutes and seconds).
AC: Have you ever produced it?
RM:Not yet, maybe someday...
AC: Why did you focus on this complication? Was it born by accident or was it your goal??
RM: I started by focusing on the day/night function, I wanted to improve it. In 2014 Krayon was born,it was unthinkable to always have to choose the city to associate the watch with. I chose to focus on this complication as it was impossible in everyone's eyes; in 2014 I realized that it was possible and I began to make calculations about what really affected the pre-setting of the city. In 2015 I then found a mechanical object that could calculate the mathematical model I had found, so I decided to put it into practice.
AC: Let's move the focus for a moment... Is there a future for watchmaking? What do you think it is?
RM: Of course, there is a future, evolution is constant, and then if I could tell you what the future is... it would already be the present!! For me the future is the combination of new technologies: today, for example, the computer is used a lot for projects, yet the finishes are all made in an extremely traditional way.
AC: And if we're talking about independents like you, what future do you see?
RM: This year I've been to BaselWorld and not ArtBasel, yet I think some unique pieces are much more works of art than watches, so yes, I see a bright future in this industry, precisely because it's art.
AC: Tell us about your relationship with RedBar, we met at a meeting of RedBar Switzerland!
RM: Everything was born by accident and in a very fun way... we met in New York, on my way to a watchonist appointment I noticed that the RedBar offices were right next to the ones I was, so, intrigued, I did research and back to Switzerland I saw that there was a chapter here too, so I came to the events!!!
AC: Tell us a little bit about how things are done in the Krayon house.
RM: I live in Neuchatel where I do research and development. I make every part of the watch produce by hand: I have a craftsman for the finishes of the movements and three for the engravings, as each of our watches has engravings. Every single detail, being the result of an order, is decided together with the customer, who tells us exactly what he would like to have and we begin to work on his every request. For example, the engraver starts from scratch with a design designed specifically for the case and the watch, so that each millimeter is in complete harmony.
AC: Tell us a little bit about what everywhere is like and why you called it that.
RM: It is a watch that wants to be simple, easy to read and very easy to adjust. It has the minimum number of calendar functions that allow you to have sunset/sunrise. I chose this name because the Equation du Temps shows the name of the city for which they are intended while mine works in each city, ergo I wrote "everywhere".
AC: And why did you call your brand Krayon?
RM: Crayon in French is the pencil and, for an engineer, that is the first tool that is used when undertaking a project, it all starts with the pencil. At first we didn't produce anything, we were just a studio of engineers.
AC: Let's talk about the future: what will be your next creation?
RM: I think I'm going to reinterpret the USS in an even different way...
AC: What are your favorite complications besides the USS?
RM: Definitely those of Romain Gautier and everything that produces a sound, like repetitions.
AC: Do you have a source of inspiration? One person, one brand...
RM: Definitely Philippe Dufour, with whom I have a beautiful friendship. He was the first to do something really his own. Otherwise I follow the whole scene but I'm not inspired by anyone, even though I'm a fan of vintage Pateks.
AC: Thank you very much Rémi, we hope to see you again soon at our event or in some of your adventures between Basel and Abu Dhabi!
I would like to thank all the participants, the Calabritto Terrace for the hospitality and ItalianWatchSpotter for the support and for helping us in the excellent success of the event!
For more information about Kryon www.krayon.ch
[envira-gallery id="4347"] [:en]Summer is coming, and we chose a fresh location to welcome our special guest from Switzerland: Rémi Maillat, founder of the micro-brand Krayon!
For this occasion Rémi brought with him the Everywhere, the masterpiece of his atelier and the first watch to use the USS caliber, a movement invented by Krayon that can tell the time of sunset and sunrise all over the world!
The piece we saw during our GTG at Calabritto Terrace was a very special one, in fact it features a black dial, a full baguette diamond bezel and the whole case is nicely engraved. We decided to interview Rémi and ask him what's the essence of his special watch, competing in GPHG among the best men's complicated watches!
AC: Good evening Rémi, thank you for taking part to our meeting! Let's start with my favorite question: what's a watch for you and which is his role in a man's life?
RM: A watch for me should move people. I remember when a watchmaker told me that he sells many watches to people affected by cancer and what makes him truly happy is seeing their faces after trying the watch on the wrist... he feels really grateful about what he does. Sometimes feelings are all that matters.
AC: This is so amazing! Talking about you: how many pieces do you produce per year?
RM: We can make five pieces per year but we only start producing after a client orders one, because we work specifically on the client's will.
AC: Great, and how has it all started?
RM: I'm an engineer, graduated in Le Locle where I learnt how to design a watch. It took me eighteen months to project my first timepiece, three times more than a normal student....it was a simple three hands movement.
AC: Have you ever thought about producing it?
RM: Not yet... maybe one day...
AC: So, why did you focus on this complication? Was it your purpose to create the USS?
RM: I started working on the day/night function, I wanted to improve it. In 2014 I created Krayon, it was a shame that every watch able to tell the time of sunset and sunrise must be built for a specific city. I chose to focus on this complication as it was considered impossible to be made. In 2014 I understood that it was possible and started calculating what really interferes with the presetting of the watch. In 2015 I found a mechanical object able to deal with the mathematical models that I found and so I decided to use it!
AC: Wow! Let's change the focus for a while: what's the future for watchmaking in your opinion? Is there one?
RM: Yes, there is a future, evolution is perpetual and if I can tell what the future will be... it will no longer be future, just present! For me future is in the combination of modern technologies and traditional techniques... for example today we use computers for almost every part of the project, but all the finishing is done by hand as it was in the past, in an extremely traditional way.
AC: And what about independent watchmaking... is there a future?
RM: You know... this year I went to BaselWold but not to ArtBasel, but I think that some timepieces seen in Basel should stay in an art gallery as they are not just watches, so yes, I see a brilliant future for independents because people love art!
AC: I hope you'll have some in the future!!! What do you think about RedBar? You know... we met at a RedBar event!
RM: It's a cool story: I discovered them randomly in NY. I was at Watchinista's headquarters for an interview and I saw RedBar's office near us and did some research... when I saw that they were in Switzerland too I immediately sent them an email and joined them!
AC: And now you're there! So, Rémi, tell us how do you work at Krayon!
RM: I live in Neuchâtel where I'm always doing research and development. Every part of my watches is produced by hands in Switzerland: for example we have an artisan for finishings and three artisans for engravings, as every watch produced has several engravings. Every single detail is decided by the client as we work on a specific order. The customer tells us what he wants and we work in order to give him exactly what he likes. The engraver, for example, starts designing the pattern from zero, in order to fit the watch perfectly, in harmony with every other part.
AC: Tell us something about the Everywhere and why you chose this name.
RM: It is a watch that wants to be simple, simple to be read, simple to be set (it just has one pusher and the crown). It has the minimum number of functions in order to calculate the USS. I chose this name because every Equation du Temps has the name of the city it was built for on the dial... my watch works in every city so "Everywhere"!
AC: And why "Krayon"?
RM: Crayon is the French for pencil... for an engineer the pencil is the beginning of every project, it's the most indispensable thing. When we established Krayon we were just an engineering studio, we didn't produce anything!
AC: Let's talk about the future: what will be your next watch?
RM: I think I'll reuse the USS but in a new way...
AC: What are your favorite complications, after the USS?
RM: Surely the ones from Romain Gautier and everything that makes a sound, such as repeaters.
AC: Where do you take inspiration from?
RM: Surely form Philippe Dufour. He is a dear friend of mine and he is the first who made something really personal that represents him. I always have an eye open on the whole horological world but I don't take inspiration from anything in particular, even if I'm a big fan of vintage Pateks!
AC: Thank you so much Rémi, hope to see you again soon at our events or around the world!
I want to thank all the people that took part to the event, Terrazza Calabritto for the hospitality, ItalianWatchSpotter for all the support and for helping us providing a succesful event!
More info about Kryon www.krayon.ch
[envira-gallery id="4347"] [:]