The legendary Arceau with its asymmetrical lugs, designed with talent and shrewdness by Henri d’Origny in 1978, is far more than just a round object that can tell you the time. In fact, it is a brilliant form of artistic expression. The proof is found in the many versions made by Hermès featuring the skills of its artists and craftsmen, particularly the Arceau Millefiori, Arceau Lift Chevaux En Camouflage or the Arceau Temari models, to name just a few. This year, the designers at the Parisian brand have opted to highlight mother-of-pearl marquetry and lacquered champlevé engraving in the Arceau Cavales watch.

This new model by Hermès is available in two versions: the first, very trendy, from the dial to strap, is available in two sizes (MM for the medium model and PM for the small model), and the second is deep black and delicately highlighted with diamonds.

hermes arceau cavales closeupAll dressed in white, the Arceau Cavales has a steel case measuring 28 or 36 mm and is watertight down to 30m. Encircled by a chapter ring set with some 70 white diamonds, the dial displays a stylised, mother-of-pearl horse’s head. Using the miniature marquetry technique, small iridescent fragments have been placed end to end like a puzzle to produce the “Cavales” pattern. At the centre of this opaline composition, two leaf-shaped, silvery hands point to the hours and minutes.

The second version of the Arceau Cavales has a black lacquer dial. To bring out the animal symbolising Hermès, the craftsmen have used the champlevé technique, which is usually seen in work on enamel, and which consists in digging out the metal material before filling it with colour. On this 28mm-wide steel watch, diamonds have been set on the bezel.

Price: 7,300 CHF (PM mother-of-pearl) – 8,600 CHF (PM lacquer) – 8,800 CHF (MM mother-of-pearl)

By Sharmila Bertin

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