For Chinese New Year, Vacheron Constantin’s “Year of the Ox” Chinese zodiac watch is a superb rendition of the gentle beast. The oldest continually operating Swiss watch brand creates stunning Metiers d’Arts “The Legend of the Chinese Zodiac” watches every year in honor of the Chinese New Year and this one does not disappoint. The ox brings a hardworking, never-giving up attitude and has incredible synergy with the earth. The creature symbolizes perseverance, loyalty and patience.
Today, the start of the Chinese New Year, Vacheron Constantin celebrates with two versions of the Legend of the Chinese Zodiac watches. Just 12 of each 40mm watch will be made: one in platinum with a blue dial and white gold sculpted ox and one in rose gold with a burnished red or bronze dial and pink gold sculpted ox. To create the magnificent creature on the dial, Vacheron Constantin’s artists looked to the ancient art of paper-cutting, known as Jianzhi, and reinterpreted it via masterful engraving and enamel work.
In the center of the dial, a three-dimensional sculpted platinum or pink gold (depending on the version) ox seems to be walking merrily along amidst a background of beautiful foliage. Even his tail seems to be wagging. The entire body of the ox is so finely etched and engraved that one the skin looks real. The artistic craftsmanship in this watch is so detailed and exacting that it must be supported with an equally as mesmerizing movement.
By turning to the Caliber 2460 G4 movement, made in house by Vacheron Constantin and carrying the Geneva Seal, Vacheron Constantin frees up pretty much the entire dial to let the ox stand out in all its glory. This movement is devoid of hands and uses only apertures to indicate the time. Via four windows strategically placed at 2 o’clock, 4 o’clock, 8 o’clock and 10 o’clock the hours, minutes, day and date respectively are displayed. The complex 237-part movement is visible via a sapphire caseback. The platinum version retails for $130,000, while the 18-karat roes gold watch sells for $107,000.