Mak­ing the MARC

Now on his third col­lab­o­ra­tion with JaegerLe­coul­tre, su­per­star de­signer Marc New­son talks good de­sign and the in­tri­ca­cies of putting to­gether the At­mos 568, writes

Prestige (Singapore) - - WATCHES - Lydianne yap

marc new­son is a man of few words. Which per­haps should come as no sur­prise, given he has made a name for him­self in the world of de­sign as a pro­po­nent of the pared down aes­thetic. “Good de­sign is about know­ing when to stop,” he tells Pres­tige i n G eneva. “It i s about cre­at­ing ob­jects that don’t date. You just know it when you see it,” he adds.

The Aus­tralian in­dus­trial de­signer would know. Lauded as one of the most inf lu­ent ial de­sign­ers of his gen­er­a­tion, the 53-year-old has re­ceived nu­mer­ous awards and dis­tinc­tions through­out his il­lus­tri­ous ca­reer. He was also in Time magazine’s 100 Most In­flu­en­tial Peo­ple list in 2005, shar­ing the honours with the likes of Ge­orge W Bush, Barack Obama and Bill Clin­ton. Hav­ing left his mark on every­thing f rom fash­ion and life­style prod­ucts ( he has on­go­ing col­lab­o­ra­tions with big­name la­bels such as G- Star Raw and Ap­ple), to home fur­nish­ings ( be­sides his iconic Lock­heed Lounge, he has also worked with brands like Magis and Alessi) over the years, New­son re­cently re­vis­ited a time­less clas­sic in the horol­ogy world: The Jaeger-lecoultre At­mos clock.

In­vented in 1928 by Swiss en­gi­neer Jean-léon Reut­ter, the At­mos clock has been a hall­mark of the man­u­fac­ture from as early as 1932 when Lecoultre ( be­fore its merger with watch­maker Jaeger) be­gan pro­duc­ing it on a com­mer­cial scale. Pow­ered by minis­cule changes in tem­per­a­ture, the iconic time­keeper has ar­guably oc­cu­pied a sig­nif­i­cant place in his­tory. “It’s sort of the ul­ti­mate cor­po­rate gift — al­most ev­ery [Amer­i­can] pres­i­dent’s had one,” jokes New­son. “And in a weird way, the At­mos rep­re­sents the cut­ting edge of tech­nol­ogy. It is com­pletely anachro­nis­tic, but it is as up-to-date now as it was over 80 years ago. It is the very def­i­ni­tion of mod­ern lux­ury with its amal­ga­ma­tion of craft and tech­nol­ogy with de­sign,” he adds.

So w hen N ew­son t ook o n t he chal­lenge of de­sign­ing an At­mos clock for the watch­maker back in 2008, it wasn’t about rein­vent­ing the wheel. In­stead, it was about “re­spect­ing the DNA of the brand, while in­ject­ing a cer­tain char­ac­ter to the At­mos to make it dif­fer­ent and ap­peal to a new au­di­ence,” he ex­plains. Now on this third At­mos

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