When the Astronomia Tourbillon was introduced in 2014, the re-invention of the tourbillon in a vertical orientation and the constant turning of its four satellites garnered most of the attention.
What led to the development of the Astronomia Art Collection, however, is the incredible sapphire crystal and precious metal case, which puts everything on display.
So, the idea was to develop special works of art to put inside the Astronomia Tourbillon, using its massive sapphire crystal case as a gallery, while still showcasing the incredible Astronomia tourbillon movement. The brand started with dragons, octopi, spiders, horses and more. Incredibly successful, Jacob & Co. has expanded the Astronomia Tourbillon Art Collection every year since.
The tourbillon is widely considered the ultimate complication, as it turns and spins to counter the effects of gravity on the precision of the movement. For the Astronomia Collection, Jacob & Co. has taken the tourbillon one step farther, introducing additional axes in which the tourbillon turns. For the Astronomia Art Flawless Imperial Dragon, the tourbillon is double-axis – turning in two axes: one in 60 seconds and the second in 2.5 minutes. The dragon sculpture blocks the movement from making its normal tour around the dial.
“PAINT THE DRAGON, DOT THE EYES”
A Chinese phrase that means to put the finishing touches on something, “Paint the Dragon, Dot the Eyes” emphasizes the attention to detail paid during the creation of the 18K rose gold sculpture of the Imperial Dragon.
Encompassing three full months of non-stop work, the sculptor painstakingly creates the 18K gold dragon, then polishes and finishes the sculpture.
Then, the dragon moves on to the painter, who completes all the small details of the scales on the dragon, the teeth, the tongue, and yes, dots the eyes.
In China, dragons represent power, prosperity, love and passion, and good luck and were reserved for the Emperors. In fact, these legendary rulers were known as “Sons of the Dragon.”
For many emperors, the dragons they used were often holding a pearl. In this case, the dragon represented authority while the pearl represented wisdom. In the Astronomia Flawless Imperial Dragon, the dragon is holding the glove in one taloned claw and grasping a pearl (actually an 18K rose gold ball painted to look like a pearl) in the other, which doubles as the point of fixation for the sculpture within the monoblocsapphire crystal case.
The dragon is red because red is an auspicious color, representing royalty and imperial power. Emperors very often wore red, the doors to their chambers were painted red, and they always wrote their decrees in red ink. So, red for the Imperial Dragon makes perfect sense.
AN ARTISTIC TOUR DE FORCE
Never before has there been a timepiece that combines high watchmaking with fine art as well as the Astronomia Flawless Imperial Dragon. And the Flawless case is the perfect gallery for the exposition of this unique sculpture – this way, it is always available for you to view, not locked away in some dusty museum.
The dragon wraps around the high watchmaking Astronomia movement, muscular and almost alive. The dragon’s body undulates around the watch like the Great Wall of China, protecting the movement from any harm that might befall it.
THE JACOB-CUT DIAMOND
Jacob & Co. has been on the forefront of using precious stones since its founding in 1986, and has developed a number of special cuts and setting techniques. For the Astronomia Tourbillon, the brand developed the 288-facet Jacob-cut diamond. This special cut can be accomplished by only a select few gem cutters, and the rough stone typically starts out double the size of the finished diamond. The facets have to be incredibly precise so the diamond is perfectly symmetrical and round. In the Astronomia Art, the one carat Jacob-cut diamond rotates on itself in 30 seconds.
THE MAGNESIUM GLOBE
The globe is made of magnesium to ensure consistency in weight, as all four satellites have to weight exactly the same. The globe rotates on itself in 30 seconds.
The Astronomia Flawless Imperial Dragon is an amazing unique piece, perfectly suiting the motto of Jacob & Co., “Inspired by the Impossible.”
THE FLAWLESS CASE
All of this complicated high watchmaking is visible thanks to the iconic Astronomia Flawless sapphire crystal case, a triumph of engineering and sapphire crystal finishing expertise. The domed sapphire crystal top and curved sides are all polished by hand, treated with an anti-reflective coating, to make sure the artistry is crystal clear.
DIAL & HANDS
The Roman numerals on the skeletonized dial are hand-engraved and filled with black lacquer, while the hand-finished hands appear in gun blue metallic.
ITEM NUMBER: AT125.80.DR.UA.B
Caliber: Manufacture Jacob&Co. Manual Winding JCAM29
Material: Titanium; Rose Gold Finishes; Sapphire Barrel Bridge
Functions: Hours and Minutes
System: Vertical Movement with 4 Arms, Full Revolution in 10 min around a Central Axis
• Double Axis Tourbillon, 1st Cage rotating in 60 sec and 2nd Cage in 2.5 min
• 1 Carat Exclusive Jacob cut® Diamond: 288 Facets, rotating on itself in 30 sec
• Magnesium Blue Lacquered Globe, rotating on itself in 30 sec;
• Hours and Minutes Dial, Patented Differential Gears System℗ allows to keep the 12/6 O’clock position
• 18K Rose Gold Hand-engraved and Hand-painted Dragon
Power Reserve: 60-Hours
Frequency: 21’600 vib/h (3 Hz)
Finishing: Plate and Bridges: Hand Angled and Polished, Flank Draw, Circular Graining, Polished Sink, One Sapphire Bridge; Polished Screws; Barrel: Circular Graining; Pinions: Conical Pinions; 4 Mechanical Ball Bearing Devices; Flat Balance Spring.
Material: Monoblock Sapphire with Double Anti-Reflective Treatment
Case Back: Sapphire with Double Anti-Reflective Treatment Palladium Metallization
Bows: Winding and Time-Setting via 18K White Gold lift-out rotating bows on caseback
Crystal: Unique Domed Sapphire with Double Anti-Reflective Treatment
Water resistance: 30m (3atm)
Dial & Hands:
Hands: Blued Jacob&Co designed hands
Strap & Clasp:
Clasp: 18K White Gold Folding Buckle
Limited Edition: Pièce Unique