watches and style to the max
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SIHH

Meetings with brands during the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) show in Geneva to see the novelties for the year.

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MB&F novelties first look @ SIHH 2019

  • Palexpo 30 Route François-Peyrot Le Grand-Saconnex, GE, 1218 Switzerland (map)
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Introduction

Max Büsser is blessed with a special creative energy and it shows with every MB&F novelty. He has a knack to bring back 70’s and 80’s dream toys, and release a modern day object that adults lust over. At SIHH the famed independent showed two pieces: one he designed himself and one he did not! However, they are both true MB&F novelties. Let’s take a closer look at each.

HM6 Final Edition

The Horological Machine (HM) constitutes one of two lines of watches that MB&F makes. They are the ones meant for dreams. The modus operandi seems to be that Max digs deep into his childhood and brings back a concept. He figures out how that could be married with a clock or how it could tell time. Deconstructs the whole thing and puts it back together with the help of an expert watchmaking friend.

The HM6 is a proxy for 60s-70s space pirates. Think Lost in Space and Flash Gordon-era television. When the HM6 was introduced, it was and still is, unlike any timepiece ever created. It is at once a true watch that wears quite comfortably on wrist but also one that tells the time in a way that we had never seen.

There are 10 sapphire glasses. Four in front (top and bottom) showing hour and minute with a rotating sphere. On top is a flying Tourbillon that can be covered on demand with a mechanical iris. The bottom of the watch you can see the blue platinum rotor from the MB&F and David Candaux Horlogerie Créative designed and implemented automatic exclusive 3D movement.

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On the back, to complete the spaceship theme, are four more sapphire spheres (top and bottom) that include miniature turbines. They rotate with the movement’s rotor giving the feel an engine pro-pulsating the space pirate in flight at every flick of the wrist. A gimmick, it would seem, but they somewhat functional; designed to act as a sort of rotational break to help prevent over winding of the movement, which, when fully wound offers 72 hours of automation.

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After offering the HM6 in titanium and red gold then in a unique sapphire case it’s time to retire it forever. The final edition is done is stainless steel. It is perhaps my favorite of the different models, for in this metal this is a watch you could really wear everyday and not worry about the polished and brushed 3D case being scratched. Only 85 exemplars will be made and the space pirate will disappear into collectors dreams. So call your AD now if it’s on your dream watch list, and happily (unlike me) you are ready to pull the trigger.

Medusa

Every year MB&F have partnered with L’Epée 1839 to create a clock that constitute an extension to their yearly novelties. There, Max is able to free his imagination of the constraints of a wristwatch dimensions to create horological piece of art that can be placed on a desk at home and in the office.

Sherman : MB&F + L’Epée collaboration in 2016

Sherman: MB&F + L’Epée collaboration in 2016

After a wide collection of robots, bugs, and spaceships. This year, not surprisingly, after the release of the HM7 Aquapod in 2018 that was inspired by a jelly fish, is the Medusa. Proposed by Independent designer Fabrice Gonet with minor input from Max (a first) is a clock that is about 30 cm high and with a diameter of about 28 cm in the form of the beautiful yet dangerous and stingy ocean cnidarians.

MB&F HM7 Aquapod

MB&F HM7 Aquapod

Made entirely of a block of glass blown in the famous Italian glassmaking region of Murano, it comes in three colors: blue, pink, and green. It can be placed on a desk or hanged. In the second configuration you can attach a set of tentacles made of the same glass to give more life to the Medusa.

The clock includes a L’Epée designed caliber expressly for the Medusa that is layered to follow the flat hockey puck shape of the jellyfish. To show the hour and minute is a single line indicator that cuts the rotating hour and minute plates. The Medusa can be set and wound with the one interactive component at the bottom. A full wind gives you 7 days power reserve.

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Truly a statement piece for the CEO who’s a fan of the ocean either as a diver or one concerns by the state of planets most diverse biosphere. Or for anyone wanting a unique object that has utility and but can be placed into a room as true mechanical art. L’Epée plans to produce 150 Medusa clocks: 50 in each color.

Final Thoughts

At Baselworld and SIHH, MB&F is always one of my most anticipated meetings. I know that whatever Max and company will show me will put a smile on my face. And this time in Geneva I was not disappointed. With the HM6, MB&F is closing a chapter for perhaps its most fantastical watch to date.

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By continuing its relationship with L’Epée and allowing a concept that is 100% MB&F yet was mostly the conceived by a friend, I think Max is suggesting that the “movement” he has created, to think outside the box, jump in an imaginary time machine to bring back or forward objects from our dreams, is taking hold. The Medusa is an example of this dream from a friend.

I am sure MB&F has more in store for 2019. I cannot wait to see what they will show me at Baselworld. But in the mean time, I urge you, if you have never seen in the metal nor tried on an MB&F watch, you owe it to yourself to locate your nearest dealer and plan a visit.

Alternatively, if you happen to visit Geneva, Dubai, Singapore, or Hong Kong, stop by their MB&F M.A.D. Gallery where you will find a few sample of the watches as well as their clocks with L’Epée. In addition you will find other pieces befitting of Max’s general vision of creating grown up toys that we want to wear and put in our home and offices but that also happen to tell time. mbandf.com