Opened in 2006, Vacheron Constantin's Les Cabinotiers department is something of a world apart. It renews with the tradition of bespoke watches and one-of-a-kind pieces, offered as a service to collectors.
The first exhibition to be jointly curated by the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie and the Michelangelo Foundation, both of which recently relocated to a historic building in downtown Geneva, highlights rare crafts and the "singular talents" who perpetuate these skills.
Michel Arnoux, head of the anti-counterfeiting division at the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry, talked about the Federation's experience in the field to an audience at the Salon Environnement Professionnel Horlogerie Joaillerie in June.
The Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie (FHH) and the University of Art and Design in Lausanne (ECAL) have joined forces in a project to produce short films on the theme of counterfeiting. This partnership is part of a wider awareness campaign in which the general public and Swiss film-makers also play a part.
After the exhibition at the Musées d'Art et d'Histoire in Geneva, held in 2008 and 2009, a new book traces the history of the Swiss watchmaking schools, and a century of innovation and evolution, through students' end-of-study pieces.
The phenomenon of counterfeiting has now reached an unprecedented scale. The value of the global counterfeit goods market could grow from $5.5 billion in 1982 to nearly $600 billion in 2010, which is 10% of world trade, according to Eric Woerth, former French budget minister.
Watch auctions are experiencing an increasingly marked scissor effect, with top lots attracting fierce bidding while the less attractive lots struggle. A closer look with Aurel Bacs, International Co-Head of Christie's Watch Department.