Looking for a coprolite watch? Come on down…
I was so wasting time. How else to explain that I actually clicked through to see a gossip item on Ernie Boch, Junior.
For readers who aren’t from New England – or who are from New England, but haven’t watched any television for the past 40 years – Ernie Boch, Junior, is the son of Ernie Boch, Senior, the car dealer who made “Come on down” a regional by-word. Ernie Junior is a chip off the old Boch – why argue with success – and so we are still urged, by jingle, to “come on dow-ow-ow-own; Ernie Boch, Junior, everything you’re looking for.”
According to The Boston Herald – there, I’ve outed myself: sometimes I do read it – Ernie Boch, Junior, can’t find everything he’s looking for in Boston. Thus, he recently trekked to Switzerland for Baselworld, the World Watch and Jewelry Show, to see what might be worth adding to his rare watch collection.
What he found was a coprolite watch from Artya.
Coming up empty on what coprolite is?
I’d say that Artya says it best:
This dial is shit, isn't it? Yes, indeed it is
Stunning transmutations fuelled by boundless creativity embody Artya's signature. Always brimful of ideas and thoroughly steeped in contemporary art, Yvan Arpa launches a new venture out of the blue, and presents an horological creation crowned with a dinosaur's coprolite dial.
Well, I’m all in favor of recycling. And, metaphorically speaking, the bloom is long off of this particular rose. Still, I’m not quite sure that I’d want to drop over $10K on a watch made out of dinosaur scat. Somehow, it just seems wrong. Couldn’t there be something else, something scientific that they could do with this specimen? Maybe find a cure for some disease, or do something cool like clone mini-dinosaurs for pets.
Anyway, if coprolite doesn’t sound quite right for you, you may be interested in the world’s heaviest watch, another Artya special. This one weighs 12 kilos and has a dial made out of concrete.
Hey, I know what you philistines are thinking: form follows function, or function follows form.
Artya's supreme mission is to fundamentally change the watchmaking syntax through the grammar of contemporary art. The workshop's initial assignment, the Artpiece 1/1 collection, heralded a new era, pioneering the appreciation of beauty, thereby relegating the context of time to the back seat. Emotion, creativity and intuition fuel the whole concept.
This avant-garde venture sets a new direction away from the current trend in watchmaking which perceives contemporary art as a device for advertising campaigns or an easy solution to enhance the aesthetics of some dials.
If you want to “fundamentally change the watchmaking syntax through the grammar of contemporary art,” you can’t just use any old materials. Thus the dinosaur shit. Thus the 12 kilo “time weighs heavily” piece.
They’ve also got “time killers” made using real bullets. And watches made from material that was struck by lightning.
I find it interesting that watch collecting has moved from collecting watches that turned out to be rare and interesting, to collecting watches that are designed specifically for collectors. Actually, I take that back. I don’t find it interesting. I find it kind of boring.
But what do I know about watch collecting?
I wear a watch for practical reasons, which – given that I always have my Blackberry with me – are no longer all that practical. When I really need to know the time, I look at my smartphone. And I don’t view/can’t afford to view watches as art works. The most I’ve ever paid for a watch is about $100, for a Skagen, which has been “my” brand for the past decade or so. I think their designs are just swell. In fact, the other day at Cosi the cashier complimented me on my watch.
Obviously if the folks like Ernie Boch, Junior, who are collecting watches just wanted to tell the time, they’d look at their iPhones. Or get themselves a Timex (or a Skagen).