Swiss watchmaker Jaquet Droz created the first timepiece featuring a singing bird more than 200 years ago. Today, the 280-year-old watch brand has launched an elegant wristwatch with an automaton songbird that sings and dances vividly.
The Jaquet Droz Charming Bird timepiece is an incredible creation that blends modern aesthetics with artistry and craftsmanship of Pierre Jaquet-Droz in automata from nearly three centuries back. First introduced by Jaquet Droz in 2013, the Charming Bird watch was awarded the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève in 2015 and has the exception of being the first and till date the only wristwatch to feature a singing bird.
For 2018, Jaquet Droz has revealed two new editions of the extraordinary watch in red gold and white gold with an ivory Grand Feu enamel dial, limited to only 8 examples for each version.
The 47mm case remains unchanged and it still has the watchmaker’s signature figure-8 design, with the upper circle at 12 o’clock formed by the hour and minute hands and the bottom circle housing the singing bird underneath the sapphire crystal dome. The timepiece features two separate movements: one powering the clock and the other running the automaton. The tiny three-dimensional bird moves around, flaps its wings and sings and the movement can run for 40 seconds before having to be wound.
For the first time ever in a wristwatch, the melody is generated by air compression inside three sapphire crystal tubes. The sound is released through a whistle to produce a song to which the bird, engraved and painted in the Jaquet Droz Ateliers d’Art, moves in time. The Charming Bird figure is engraved and painted in the Jaquet Droz Ateliers d’Art and the two new versions of the Charming Bird are priced slightly less than the 2016 versions with a price tag of $399,000 apiece.