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Audemars Piguet [RE]Master02- a Tribute to Brutalism

Following in the footsteps of [RE]Master01, launched in 2020 to reinterpret a rare chronograph from 1943, this new limited edition is a brutal one, only to be compared with a very limited edition watch from the early 1960’s.

Audemars Piguet [RE]Master02- a Tribute to Brutalism

Following in the footsteps of [RE]Master01, launched in 2020 to reinterpret a rare chronograph from 1943, this new limited edition is a brutal one, only to be compared with a very limited edition watch from the early 1960’s.

Audemars Piguet has a great legacy in watchmaking. It not only achieved legendary status as a watch brand, it also played an essential role in the foundation of the watchmaking industry in Switzerland. If you look beyond the Royal Oak you’ll find a wealth of exciting, innovative and challenging watches in the brands’ history. With the [RE]Master series AP celebrates their legacy, and after the first edition in 2020 the [RE]Master02 was introduced last week.

And what do we see here? A sculptural, assymetrical watch that feels both vintage and highly modern, fitting in a current trend. For AP it’s a modern interpretation of the 5159BA, a similar shaped (but smaller) timepiece that was produced in 1960 in only 7 pieces. It fits in a era, roughly between 1959 and 1963, when the brand produced a series of assymetrically shaped watches, all very limited. It was inspired by the Brutalist movement, with angular geometric shapes devoid of ornamentation.

Back to 2024. Bold statements in shape and looks usually come from creative independent watchmakers. The line that started in the late 1990’s with Urwerk has resulted in a niche where asymmetry, design and clean lines are used to trigger our imagination in how to present and read time. The recent launches of the Toledano & Chan B/01 and the revival of the Amida Digitrend also fit in this chapter. All watches that are clearly inspired by the 60’s and 70’s but always feel timeless.

It makes the [RE]Master02 somewhat expected if you will, as some momentum for quirky and disruptive watches can be identified. It’s great to see how Audemars Piguet dares to step into this, and reminds us they have a history in doing this.

Let’s jump into the watch. Model 5159BA is today reinterpreted in a new limited edition of 250 pieces. [RE]Master02 features an asymmetrical 41 mm rectangular case crafted in the new 18-carat sand gold alloy. This timepiece houses the extra-thin Calibre 7129, one of the Manufacture’s latest selfwinding hour and minute movement. The “Bleu Nuit, Nuage 50” dial that combines different geometries and is subdivided into twelve individually machined brass triangles that have been decorated with a linear satin finish before being placed on a brass plate.

As said, this will not be the best-seller in the catalogue but the watch is for sure a conversation piece. 250 pieces will be produced at a price of CHF 38,000. I’m pretty sure these will sell out quickly.

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