Alexander Shorokhoff watches are wrist-born works of art lauded for their unique dual citizenship that combines German precision with Russian spirit. The two focal collections, Heritage and Avantgarde, are inspired by culture, though each from a different perspective. The former is dedicated to the 19th century and combines classic design with traditional engravings, skeletonizing, and enameling. The latter is inspired by avant garde art and suprematism, the Russian art movement of the early 20th century. “Every watch tells a story,” founder and namesake Alexander Shorokhov explains.

Babylonian II, hand engraved, manual wind, limited to 300 pieces.

Though the Alexander Shorokhoff watch manufacture was formally established in 2002, Shorokhov has been producing watches since the mid-1990s, when he established the watch brand Poljot, and later Poljot International. At that time, like today, the Moscow-born aesthete was profoundly influenced by his native country, where he studied architecture and became a civil engineer before relocating to Germany in 1991. But it was the establishment of the Alexander Shorokhoff watch manufacture in Bavaria 25 years ago that set the stage for global recognition.

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“If you call a brand after yourself, you connect all your life with it,” says Shorokhov, who retains the traditional “double f” at the end of the brand name. “Your life, from that moment, belongs to the brand with all responsibilities coming from that.”

Regulator with hand engraved manual wind movement.

“The Heritage collection features completely hand-engraved movements and starts at around $4,000,” says U.S. distributor Ray Grenon, who first noticed the watches in a shop window in Switzerland and became intrigued by their bold design and incredible value. “The Avantgarde collection starts at only $1,300 and still features many hand-engraved components. Straps are made from shrunken leather, and they are extremely soft and comfortable.”

The ETA or Poljot movements powering the timepieces are all re-worked in-house – bridges are embellished, surfaces are refined, and gears are decorated. “We skeletonize and hand-engrave the movements and assemble them after this process,” Shorokhov explains, adding that the company also develops its own modules, citing the regulator and chrono-regulator movements as examples.

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New tourbillon limited to 5 pieces with hand engraved Concepto movement.

Grenon points out that unlike most companies in which watches take shape in an assembly-line fashion, “Alexander wants each watchmaker to take ownership of each piece, therefore the entire watch is built top to bottom by one person,” he says. “At the end of this process the watchmaker fills out a card with the quality control checks, water resistance check, and timing results. At the bottom is her or her signature, and this card is given to the customer at the time of purchase.”

Shown here, the 46.5mm stainless steel Babylonian I is a limited edition of 500 pieces and features a decorative sunburst pattern at the center of the skeletonized dial. The hand-engraved and rose gold-plated manual winding Caliber 2609.AS—with blued screws, 17 jewels, and power reserve of about 42 hours—drives the hours, minutes and central seconds. Priced at $2,835, the Babylonian was nominated for the German Design Award in 2015.

Priced at just over $2,000, the C01 manual-wind chronograph with an enameled “panda” dial—so called because of its large white sub-dial “eyes” at 3 and 9 o’clock—is driven by a modified and engraved Poljot Caliber 3133.AS. It features hours, minutes, decentralized seconds and minute counters, chronograph, and a date. The stainless steel case is 43.5mm and is fitted on a super-soft light brown calfskin leather strap.

Winter, which was recognized by the German Design Award earlier this year, achieves its snowy sparkle from diamond dust hand applied to the dial. The blued hour, minute, and seconds hands add to the wintry tableau, as does the cool 39mm stainless steel case. This limited edition watch, with an automatic movement, is priced at $1,850, and, according to Grenon, it is a favorite among his female clients.

The new 63, priced at $1,600, is a classic featuring vintage styling and a hand-engraved rotor. It is available with a green, burgundy, or black dial, in addition to the blue dial shown here. Oversize applied Arabic numerals—20, 40, and 60—complement the central hours, minutes, and seconds.

The 43.5mm stainless steel Plus Minus is a modernist example of Shorokhoff’s “art on the wrist” ethos. The dial is guilloched and enameled in a colorful avant garde style embellished with mother-of-pearl at 9 o’clock. This limited edition of 168 pieces, priced at $1,885, has an automatic hand-engraved movement with an enameled rotor powering the hours, minutes, center seconds, and date.

“Kandy” model, automatic movement.

“It doesn’t matter what you do for a living, how old you are ,or what your hobbies may be,” Shorokhov muses. “The only important thing is your approach to life. And with our products we have created a niche for cosmopolitan customers who are self-confident, educated, and have an affinity for art and culture. Art has no limits or borders.”

New “Crossing” model, a jump hour made to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Alexander Shorokhoff.

Currently, Alexander Shorokhoff watches can be found at Grenon’s of Newport in Rhode Island, Little Treasury in Maryland, Orlando Watch company in Florida, Danson Jewelers in New Jersey, Diamonds Direct in South Carolina, and Right Time Watches in Colorado.

Author: Nancy Olson

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