By Gordon Henderson
Located in the scenic town of Burgdorf, in the northwest part of Bern, Switzerland, Armin Strom (a brand we have written about many times before here) opened his own watchmaking shop in 1967 where he not only sold and restored watches, but also started creating pieces of his own design. The first creation was a gold pocket watch that featured a hand engraved dial and polished blue lapis lazuli. As he continued to hone his craft, Armin found his true passion and point of specialization, the art of skeletonization. The first pieces were only available in his shop. However, in 1984 he made his first appearance at Basel World and the rest is history.
Today, Armin Strom is independently owned and run – and continues to offer skeletonized watches in innovative and visionary designs that recall the past but look to the future. The latest release is the Skeleton Pure. Comprised of 146 parts, the Skeleton Pure prominently features the three-dimensional layering artistry of the manufacture. The watch movement, the Caliber ARM09-S, can be viewed from both the front and back, and the pieces comprising the movement are accentuated via a 3D PVD colorization that renders it superbly blue. It is accented with rhodium- and ruthenium-plated components. The movement itself measures 36.6 mm and is housed in a modern 43.40-sized case. Through the dial of the manually wound 8-day power reserve watch, one can view the two main springs that give the timepiece its lasting wear. The dial also features a slightly off-centered hours and minutes display, and has a small seconds indicator at 9:00.
The Skeleton Pure will be produced in limited runs of 100 pieces each in four different metals that represent the brand’s signature elements: Air (titanium), Water (stainless steel), Fire (18k Rose gold), Earth (black PVD coated stainless steel). Each edition features a matching leather alligator strap with optional deployment clasp manufactured in the same metal as the watch, and is sold with a matching rubber strap. Water resistant to 50m, the Skeleton Pure retails from $33,400 for the Water to $46,400 for the Fire.