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Christophe Claret’s Feathered Serpent: Maestro Quetzalcóatl

Christophe Claret has created a masterpiece to honour one of ancient Mexico's main deities: the Quetzalcoatl watch, available as a limited edition of 8 pieces.

Engraved by hand in meticulous detail, the feathered serpent is skilfully incorporated around the Maestro's movement.

 

Christophe Claret has a passion for history, and has delved into Mexican mythology to create its latest piece: the Maestro Quetzalcoatl. This important Aztec deity – patron of the priesthood, inventor of the calendar and protector of craftsmen – proudly snakes across the Maestro's movement. This feathered serpent can be glimpsed between the hour and minute hands, the indicator for the MEMO function, and the spring balance. This divinity, embodied by a feathered serpent, is now shrouded in mystery within the heart of this new Maestro.

 

Technical jungle

The Maestro watch was a natural choice to accommodate the rippling coils of the Quetzalcóatl snake. Following the model unveiled in 2017 and infusing a new dynamic into the Tradition collection, the Maestro Quetzalcóatl appeals through both its shape and its proportions, including the pure and powerful lines of its 42 mm black PVD-treated titanium case topped by an impressive sapphire crystal dome. A boldly contemporary model intended for trendsetters and influencers, the Maestro offers a spectacular view of the movement and the snake’s sinuous body, which may be admired from every angle and along every sleek scale. The Maestro is also ideal because of its hand-wound movement, whose skilfully arranged components are displayed in all their glorious technical profusion, vividly reflecting that of a luxuriant jungle. 

The overall construction is revealed through a multi-dimensional architecture. Like all timepieces by Christophe Claret, the Maestro showcases a wealth of details mingling technical and aesthetic elements in an exceptionally coherent manner. Brand enthusiasts will recognize the watchmaker’s inimitable touch in the famous Charles X stepped and skeletonized bridges – with 26 interior angles – that have become a signature of the Maison. The skeleton-working of the bridge supporting the escapement represents a clever blend of classicism and modernity that affords a chance to appreciate all its subtle features.

The visual adventure through the intricacies of the movement continues with two series-coupled barrels ensuring optimal efficiency and majestically positioned at 12 o’clock. Here too, the bridges are skeletonized to provide an exemplary view of the blade spring of the first barrel and thus enable the wearer of the watch to gauge the state of the seven-day power reserve.

 

A return to fundamentals

In terms of horological complications, the Maestro Quetzalcóatl once again illustrates the creative audacity cultivated by Christophe Claret. Witness the patented large date display at 5 o’clock, composed of two cones – one for the tens on the upper part and the second for the units – and performing a semi-instantaneous jump between midnight and twenty past midnight. As if to echo the 3D effect of this voluminous date display, the Maestro’s characteristic MEMO function appears between 3 and 4 o’clock. Inspired by the expression “tie a knot in your handkerchief” to help one remember something important, the MEMO is an ingenious mechanical reminder intended for absent-minded individuals as well as fans of technical gadgets. Whatever daily objective the owner of the Maestro has set himself, the MEMO is there to remind him of his commitments. In the initial position, meaning when the owner must do something, a tsavorite appears at 6 o’clock on the side face of the MEMO, like the gem set at its top. Once the objective has been met, a simple press on the pusher at 2 o’clock pivots the MEMO function, which will display a diamond on its side face at 6 o’clock, instead of the tsavorite. The MEMO will return to its initial position each night in a twenty-minute process driven by a semi-instantaneous jump system.

Whether it’s a cue to pay a daily compliment to a loved one, to meditate for ten minutes a day, to do a good deed, to avoid a trap or avert a danger: there are any number of good reasons to activate the MEMO.

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