Time Æon Foundation is delighted to announce a new partnership with Urwerk that aims to support the Oscillon project, established by two young watchmakers, Dominique Buser and Cyrano Devanthey. They first expressed the idea of creating a watch “like a century ago” as students of watchmaking in the 1990s. For twenty years, they sought to acquire old machines, which they then restored and learned to use, gleaning lost skills from the elders of the profession where necessary. This was how they designed their first timepiece, “L’Instant de Vérité” (The Moment of Truth), which features an unusual movement in that it employs a constant-force spring, requiring the use of a differential. While the timepiece as a whole was first modelled using CAD, each part is produced entirely by hand using vintage machinery. So much so that only ten of these timepieces will be produced in Oscillon’s workshops, at the rate of two to three per year.
This desire to keep slowly vanishing watchmaking heritage alive is reminiscent of the “Naissance d’une Montre” project, a venture supported by Time Æon Foundation which saw young watchmaking teacher Michel Boulanger acquire age-old skills in order to produce a timepiece entirely by hand.
On 3 November 2016, the Oscillon project was presented at a round table held at Salon QP in London (3-5 November, Saatchi Gallery). It was attended by watchmakers Stephen Forsey (Greubel Forsey), Felix Baumgartner (Urwerk), Roger Smith (Roger W. Smith LTD) and journalist James Gurney (editor of QP Magazine and founder of Salon QP).