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Jules Verne Engraved in Time
MB&F enlists a renowned engraver to create timepieces inspired by the science fiction author
Wednesday, October 21, 2020
Swiss watchmaker Maximilian Busser & Friends (MB&F) has teamed with engraver Eddy Jaquet to create a limited-edition series of timepieces inspired by eight Jules Verne novels. The series features illustrations engraved by Jaquet on modified versions of MB&F’s Legacy Machine Split Escapement (LM SE) watches.
“We’re brainstorming around the table, and a theme that comes immediately to mind is the writing of Jules Verne, because I’m so into science fiction,” stated MB&F founder Maximilian Büsser in a press release. He described the Legacy Machine collection as “basically the watch that I would have created if MB&F was founded 150 years ago.”
Jaquet conceived the designs from his own readings of Verne’s works, as well as secondary sources including film adaptations and the original published illustrations. He read up to 60 novels and short stories, eventually settling on these: Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, From the Earth to the Moon, Around the World in Eighty Days, Five Weeks in a Balloon, Journey to the Center of the Earth, The Adventures of Captain Hatteras, Michael Strogoff, and Robur the Conqueror.
He then created sketches depicting scenes from the novels within the constraints of the watch plate.
Some parts of the watch plate are thinner than others, which limited his ability to engrave those areas in deep relief. He used a dark rhodium alloy to create a range of grey tones. All told, each watch required 300 hours of additional labor, including modifications to enable the engraving as well as the engraving itself.
Each watch is priced at $162,000, but in case you were planning to save up your pennies, they’ve already sold out. Fear not, however, as you can peruse the series in the gallery below.