Jaeger Le-Coultre: Reverso Tribute Minute Repeater22 September 2021
Not one, not two, not three, but four! Jaeger Le-Coultre celebrates the Reverso’s 90th anniversary with an unexpected poker. Yes, after the Tribute Nonantième, the Hybris Mechanica Calibre 185, and the green Small Seconds we were more than satisfied, yet JLC keeps surprising us with the Reverso Tribute Minute Repeater. And that’s not all…
A UNIQUE TRADITION
In the 1990s, amid the rebirth of mechanical watchmaking that followed the quartz crisis, the Reverso – with its distinctive rectangular case – became the vehicle through which the Manufacture would redevelop its expertise in high complications. Having mastered the added challenge that rectangular movements dictate an entirely different architecture from that of traditional round movements Jaeger-LeCoultre presented the Reverso Répétition Minutes in 1994. It was the first time the Maison had miniaturised a minute repeater for a wristwatch and was the world’s first rectangular minute repeater movement.
In fact, Jaeger-LeCoultre’s mastery of chiming mechanisms dates back to the very foundation of the Manufacture in 1833, and its deep expertise is today confirmed by an archive of more than 200 chiming calibres. Since that first Reverso minute repeater of the 1990s, Jaeger-LeCoultre’s engineers and designers have redefined the benchmark for acoustic quality, harnessing new technology in service of this noble tradition.
A NEW EXPRESSION
Embodying technical advances such as Jaeger-LeCoultre’s patented trebuchet hammers, silent regulator and a new generation of gongs, the Reverso Tribute Minute Repeater is powered by a revised version of Calibre 944 – a movement entirely conceived, designed and produced within the Manufacture. The new timepiece is distinguished by dials on both the front and reverse sides, bringing a fresh visual expression to the timeless Reverso design, as well as to the minute repeater mechanism itself. While the dials both display the same time, they are very different in character – one exuberant, the other more sober. Both are a testament to the beauty of fine movement decoration and the exceptional level of craftsmanship that resides within the Manufacture.
The front dial is entirely skeletonised, revealing the full complexity of the minute repeater mechanism and presenting a mesmerising display of moving parts when the minute repeater is activated. Beneath a large bow-shaped bridge that sweeps from 11 o’clock to 7 o’clock, the components appear almost to be floating in three dimensions, the sense of visual depth and transparency enhanced by faceted indexes that are cantilevered from the chemin de fer minutes track. With a gleaming golden finish, the bridge, hour markers, gongs and several other components perfectly match the colour of the rose-gold watch case.
While the exuberance of the front dial contrasts with the rectilinear geometry of the Reverso case, the relative sobriety of the reverse dial echoes and amplifies those straight lines. Vertical Côtes de Genève stripes extend over the entire height of the main plate, which also serves as the dial. Showcasing the timekeeping mechanism, with subtle colour accents provided by blued screws and golden hands and hour markers, the cool silver tone of the metal provides an elegant counterpoint to the warm rose gold of the case.
Set into the side of the rose gold watch case (51,1 X 31 mm), the slider that activates the chimes has been specially designed for the new Reverso Tribute Minute Repeater to be as slim as possible, without sacrificing ergonomics.
Paired with a brown alligator strap, the new Jaeger Le-Coultre Reverso Tribute Minute Repeater is a limited edition of just 10 pieces available at the price of €. 305,000 taxes included.
THE REVERSO EXHIBITION: INTERMPORELLE DEPUIS 1931
Jaeger-LeCoultre pays homage to its Icon in the city that hosted, in 1925, the Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes, from which Art Déco originated.
In homage to this watchmaking icon, Jaeger-LeCoultre creates “Reverso: Intemporelle depuis 1931”. An opportunity to explore the cultural and creative universe of this design icon, through an immersive sensory experience that embraces a pop-up boutique, a fascinating retrospective, an Art Deco café and a hands-on workshop. Featuring a specially commissioned art installation by the American artist Michael Murphy, and a selection of famous Reverso watches, from the earliest time-only models to the new Reverso Hybris Mechanica Calibre 185.
Before or after the exhibition, visitors can enjoy a delicious break at the 1931 Café, an elegant and welcoming Art Deco setting. The elegant black and white décor, reminiscent of the 1930s, is a feast for the eyes, while a special menu created by the young Parisian pastry chef Nina Métayer will delight the taste buds. Designed to evoke the aesthetic codes of Art Deco, these exceptional sweet treats are an invitation to travel through the aromas and flavours of the Vallée de Joux: mountain berries, nuts, honey, herbs and chocolate.
To complete the exhibition, the Atelier d’Antoine – named after the Manufacture’s founder – has been specially relocated to Paris, giving visitors the opportunity to enjoy a unique, hands-on adventure with the Reverso. Together with a watchmaker and instructor, this workshop combines interactive theoretical learning with practical training.
The “Reverso: Timeless Stories Since 1931” exhibition and the 1931 Café will be open Tuesday to Saturday from 21 October to 24 December at 15 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré in the 8th arrondissement of Paris. The exhibition is free to the public, but booking is recommended at www.exposition-reverso.com