“Keeping Time” is the latest initiative from MR PORTER, the premier online high-end men’s style discovery and shopping platform. MR PORTER is an authorized dealer of many fine timepiece names, including most of the watch brands that exist under the Richemont Group. Part of MR PORTER’s ongoing mission is to continuously integrate the larger catalog of products it carries into contemporary style and culture. “Keeping Time” does just that by celebrating 2022’s most significant new watch releases, curated around a theme of music, rhythm, and style.
Based in London, MR PORTER went local to develop content for the “Keeping Time” initiative. Editors at MR PORTER worked exclusively with in-town musical talent, such as DoomCannon, to produce a novel video along with stunning photographic displays featuring at least two specially selected watches. The products represent a number of styles across various price points, demonstrating the sheer versatility of the campaign’s rhythmic theme as it relates to the world of traditional timekeeping.
MR PORTER does an excellent job of visually showcasing the watches it carries on the platform and is interested in discussing the specific pieces in more detail with the timepiece enthusiast audience of aBlogtoWatch. “Keeping Time’s” selection of horological instruments breaks down into three main categories: sporty watches, dressier watches, and tourbillon-equipped high-luxury watches.
For “Keeping Time’s” sports watches, MR PORTER made a selection from three popular subcategories, including diver’s watches, pilot’s watches, and adventure watches. The dive-style model is the Panerai Submersible QuarantaQuattro Carbotech Ref. PAM01232, which marries the popular 44mm wide case size of the Panerai Submersible with a black Carbotech case, as well as a deep blue color accent theme. This seriously sporty wristwatch is an expressive and moody take on fashionable diver’s watches and also represents the most modern side of the Panerai Submersible family. Next is a watch from the world of flight, the effortlessly classic IWC Big Pilot’s Watch 43 ref. IW329306, which combines the modestly large 43mm-wide steel case and matching bracelet with a green-hued dial and IWC’s celebrated in-house automatic movement.
Trekking and adventure sports watches are the fastest growing category of sports watches in the high-end space. Inspired by a range of trekking styles, from cave descending to mountain climbing, trekking watches celebrate human mastery over the surfaces of our world. For “Keeping Time,” MR PORTER also selected a limited-edition version of the Montblanc Geosphere 1858 known as the o Oxygen ref. 129415. Based on Montblanc’s successful dual view dial of the earth’s hemispheres as a second time zone indicator, the 0 Oxygen model takes inspiration from the thin air at high altitudes and is available with a glacier-style dial. From a technical perspective, the Geosphere 1858 0 Oxygen case is devoid of oxygen and instead is filled with a different gas that causes less friction and wear on the mechanical automatic movement inside.
Lifestyle watches meant for socializing and urban adventures are some of the most popular wristwatch categories today and are well-represented in MR PORTER’s “Keeping Time” campaign. Many of today’s formal watches are actually inspired by sports or professional-used watches from the past as, over time, many antique industrial features are considered elegant, today. The dressier watches can be further separated into two sub-categories — modern-style or classic-style dress watches. Let’s focus first on the modern dress watches included in “Keeping Time.” Baume & Mercier’s Riviera Baumatic is the first modern dress watch in this category. As the ref. M0A10702 in brushed steel with a matching bracelet, this Riviera is a rebirth of Baume & Mercier’s iconic geometric bezel design with a remarkably high-performance and environmentally resistant automatic movement with five days of power reserve.
Piaget’s Polo Date is another modern-themed lifestyle dress watch with a classic look typified by an elegant cushion case in steel housing a thin in-house automatic movement. The ref. G0A47014 version comes with a versatile black dial and matching comfortable black rubber strap. A step up in complexity in a modern dress watch is the Hermes Slim Automatic GMT seen in the campaign at the 39mm-wide platinum-cased ref. 054192WW00. The dial contains local and home time indicators along with convenient day/night displays for both zones.
The traditional dress watches represented in “Keeping Time” only differ in that their aesthetic inspiration comes from a bit earlier in horological history. The Cartier Pasha Grille ref. WPGA0019 for example is a gold-cased version of a diver or military watch from decades ago. Its special feature includes a gold grille over the dial that can be easily removed by the wearer depending on their particular choice of style that day. The Pasha case includes a screw-on crown protector that hearkens back to early water-resistant timepieces. It is truly an example of how something functional from yesterday has become a formal-wear object today.
Another sports watch from yesterday that has transformed over time into a timepiece best worn with formal attire is the Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso, a welcome addition to the “Keeping Time” selection of products. Gone are the Reverso’s days as a tool for polo players, with its dual-sided case now often serving as space for multiple watch faces. MR PORTER’s “Keeping Time” includes the ref. Q3918420 Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Tribute DuoFace with one dial intended for the day and one dial intended for the night. The silver-faced calendar dial features the classic symmetrical beauty the Reverso dial is known for, while the opposite deep blue dial features just the time and a day/night indicator for an after-dark theme.
Tourbillon-equipped watches celebrate the intersection of artisanship and expressive style for well-funded patrons of the arts. The mechanical dance of the spinning tourbillon cage tantalizes the eyes of the wearer, while the sheer number of human hours necessary to construct them implies elevated acquisition prices. An interesting and on-music theme choice of tourbillon watches for the “Keeping Time” initiative is the Roger Dubuis Excalibur Gully Monotourbillon Limited Edition EX0931. Produced in collaboration with London-based musical artist Gully, this version of the Excalibur Monotourbillon is produced in a 42mm-wide titanium case with a skeletonized dial that has a rainbow-colored depiction of Gully’s name on the dial.
MR PORTER’s “Keeping Time” campaign of watches ends with a mechanical encore presenting the in-demand Vacheron Constantin Overseas Tourbillon Skeleton ref. 6000V/110R-B934. The all-gold Overseas case and matching bracelet contain a painstakingly decorated and assembled tourbillon-based movement which is both an automatic as well as carefully skeletonized for maximum aesthetic and emotional pleasure. Like a masterpiece composition, the Overseas Tourbillon Skeleton is often appreciated as being more impressive than just the mere sum of its parts.
Be sure to check out the entire “Keeping Time” campaign and content pieces on the MR PORTER website.
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