Patek Philippe heads to Singapore for its fifth grand exhibition, showcasing the wonders and world of last independent family-owned Genevan watchmaking company.
After presenting its universe and creations to Dubai back in 2012, Munich in 2013, London in 2015 and New York just a couple of years ago in 2017, Patek Philippe brings its signature grand exhibition to Singapore. It was certainly a most opportune choice, as 2019 is also the Singapore Bicentennial year. More importantly, however, Singapore—and Southeast Asia as a whole—has become a major market for fine timepieces and a driving force in building appreciation for fine, mechanical watchmaking.
Anybody familiar with past Patek Philippe exhibitions can tell you that each edition manages to really highlight the bonds between the watch brand and the nation. For instance, in London, it was the Royal Room with timepieces belonging to the likes of Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth II. Then in New York, visitors were treated to Historical Room which held, among others, a desk clock owned by John F. Kennedy and a chronograph watch owned by American baseball icon Joe DiMaggio.
Naturally, the Watch Art Grand Exhibition Singapore 2019 will also feature a special room dedicated to its hosting nation—which we will cover in greater detail later on. For now, suffice to say, that this will be the biggest exhibition by Patek Philippe yet. Much like its predecessors, this exhibition will be divided into ten themed rooms, each with its own unique ambience. There will be bits of history, contemporary collections, live demonstrations by watchmakers and artisans and much, much more.
The exhibit, runs from September 28 until October 13, 2019 at the Marina Bay Sands Theater. Admission is free and tickets can be redeemed at patek.com/WatchArt2019. It’s also interesting to note that—if past events are any indication—the exhibit is perfect for families with children looking for an entertaining and educational time. Besides, as the slogan of the brand goes: “You never actually own a Patek Philippe. You merely look after it for the next generation.” So, perhaps, a new family tradition or might just be sparked there…
Anyway, back to the exhibition venue, as mentioned earlier, there will be ten themed rooms. Below is a short rundown of what visitors can expect in each:
This small movie theater will screen a video showing the history of Patek Philippe.
CURRENT COLLECTION ROOM
As its name implies, this room is reserved for the presentation of Patek Philippe’s current collections. The interior of the room is inspired by the Patek Philippe Salon on Rue du Rhône in Geneva, Switzerland.
If the Current Collection Room is inspired by the Patek Philippe Salon in Geneva, the Napoleon Room will transport visitors there through a huge motion-picture panoramic view overlooking Lake Geneva. This incredible vista serves as the background for a display of limited-edition timepieces created specifically for the Southeast Asia market.
Feast your eyes on a vast array of timekeeping instruments flown in from the Patek Philippe Museum. Much like the actual museum in Geneva, the Museum Room is divided into two departments. First, we have the Antique Collection, which provides visitors with a wonderful historic panorama of the history of watchmaking with some of the very first portable timepieces from the mid-16th century, richly enameled pocket watches, musical automata and technical timepieces crafted by Europe’s most gifted watchmakers. And then there’s also the Patek Philippe Collection, which, obviously, showcases a selection of the manufacture’s most splendid creations from 1839 to the present day. There are watches worn by royalty, including a piece presented to Queen Victoria back in 1851 during the Great Exhibition at the London Crystal Palace, the very first Swiss wristwatch from 1868 along with some of the most famous Patek Philippe supercomplications.
RARE HANDCRAFTS ROOM
Perhaps the most spellbinding part of the exhibition, the Rare Handcrafts Room features live demonstrations by various artisans, especially enameling, but also engraving, miniature painting and wood marquetry. Seeing these rare, centuries-old crafts being performed live, right in front of your eyes can be a life-changing moment. In short, this room—and the beautiful timepieces displayed amid the workstation—beautifully underscores Patek Philippe’s commitment to rare handcrafts.
While rare handcrafts are undoubtedly amazing, seeing Patek Philippe’s master watchmakers tinker with the manufacture’s mechanical marvels is no less spellbinding. Here, visitors are invited to delve deep into the inner workings of the world’s finest watches.
GRAND COMPLICATIONS ROOM
The stellar reputation of Patek Philippe was built, in part, by its grand complications. These are some of the most complicated and innovative Patek Philippe timepieces ever created, now presented in one place. If a visit to the Watchmakers Room can help you gain a better understanding of mechanical timekeeping, the Grand Complications Room will make you ask once again: “How on earth do they do that?”
This space is dedicated to the extensive range of Patek Philippe movements—from simple calibers to highly elaborate ones developed for the world’s most complicated watches. More than just a catalog of instruments, the Movements Room beautifully showcases the length and breadth of Patek Philippe’s creations and offers a unique perspective on the evolution and creative scope of the brand.
In this room, visitors can get some hands-on experience of the Patek Philippe manufacture and the brand’s calibers. This is, arguably, the part of the exhibition that’s most fun.
SINGAPORE AND SOUTHEAST ASIA ROOM
And finally, we come to the crown jewel of Watch Art Grand Exhibition Singapore 2019. The Singapore and Southeast Asia Room pays tribute to Singapore’s 200th anniversary as well as the grand heritage of Singapore and all of Southeast Asia with its rich historic, cultural, artistic and natural legacy.
Now, as we touched on earlier, “family” has always been at the heart of Patek Philippe. So, in that spirit, the brand also hosts a couple of Family Days during the Watch Art Grand Exhibition Singapore 2019. Set across two Sundays—namely October 6 and 13, 2019—the Family Days will provide educational opportunities to explore the world of Swiss watchmaking for the whole family.
Visiting children will receive welcome kits and can join a Time Treasure hunt that will allow them to create their own watches inspired by the exhibition. They can also step into the shoes of a Patek Philippe watchmaker with a mechanical clock making kit for children. Families can also take photos while dressed as watchmakers for some fun memories. Of course, getting to meet master watchmakers and artisans, then watching them ply their crafts would be unforgettable for youngsters and adults alike.
“You never actually own a Patek Philippe,” the slogan goes, “you merely look after it for the next generation.” And so, Patek Philippe once again opens its world to everybody—those looking after their timepieces for the next generation and those who will next take up the task.
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