From its 1920s heyday, Art Deco style has always been about luxury and glamour. Featuring bold geometric designs, using fine craftsmanship and precious materials, it represented optimism, dynamism, a celebration of technological progress and exuberance.
When jeweller Harry Winston founded his legendary brand in New York City in 1932, Art Deco’s sleek and symmetrical style was evident in all aspects of life, from the skyline punctured with probing, grand skyscrapers like the Chrysler Building, through decor and furniture, fashion – and refined jewellery. Harry Winston’s designs embraced the spirit of the art movement, and its timeless elegance has endured through the decades.
Reinterpreted for contemporary times, Harry Winston’s new Premier Collection – the series designated to showcasing artistic forms – includes an extraordinary example: the Premier Majestic Art Deco Automatic. Paying homage to the Art Deco aesthetic, this 36mm mechanical timepiece is a marvel of monochrome. Housed in a white gold case, the dial’s angular geometry is emphasised with a black and white palette.
A visually complex assortment of different materials, from black jade, pearls, mother-of-pearl to diamonds, are set in glamorous layers, creating dramatic depth and volume. Richness and a sense of antiquity are added to the mix with subtle gradations of silvery grey. The Harry Winston gem-setters have found intriguing ways to use the different materials and textures in marquetry to create a geometric sunray, a signature motif of Art Deco. The legendary jewellery’s favourite cut for precious stones is featured with the emerald-cut black jade that sits on the top half of the dial, drawing the eye to its octagonal facets framed by round brilliant diamonds, arranged to create maximum sparkle. Black and white has never gone out of fashion, as this work of beauty and precision demonstrates.