Sven Andersen: a legendary genius in the world of the complication watch and a pioneering presence who has inspired countless independent watchmakers over the decades.
Born in 1942 in Denmark, Andersen completed a four-year qualification at watchmaking college before moving to Switzerland in 1963. He found work at the distinguished watch purveyor Gubelin, where he quickly established his credentials in the restoration and repairs workshop before being head-hunted by Patek Philippe to develop complications for their watches. He further broadened his expertise by working with watch case manufacturers, until finally he was ready to set up as an independent watchmaker. In addition to creating many of his own striking designs, he has provided specialist advice and consulting services to leading brands on complication mechanisms such as perpetual calendars and retrograde functions, as well as a number of specially-designed pieces. Andersen was a leading figure in establishing the position of independent creators in the watchmaking industry, and also has a strong commitment to passing on his expertise and experience to the next generation of watchmakers. with Many of the independent watchmakers that he has supported over the years are active in the Swiss watchmaking industry today. Andersen is something of a father figure in the world of independent watchmaking.
Grand Jour & Nuit#3/20 White gold Aventurine dial (Released 2006)
An unusual “jumping hour” piece with separate hour hands for day and night
Sven Andersen has designed a range of complications such as perpetual calendar and world time on behalf of prestigious watch brands. The Jour & Nuit (day and night in French) features a unique mechanism that uses separate hands to indicate daytime and nighttime hours on the dial.
Andersen has previously designed a number of Jour & Nuit models, including several under his own name. This particular model was released in 2006 under the Sven Andersen brand.
The upper half of the watch face shows the hour. The daytime hours (6 a.m. to 6 p.m.) are arranged on the outer semicircle, with the nighttime hours (6 p.m. to 6 a.m.) in the inner semicircle. The small round dial in the lower half, meanwhile, shows the minutes.
The watch employs two opposing hour hands mounted on the central shaft, with the long hand used to indicate daytime hours and the short hand nighttime hours.
The distinctive movement of the hour hands is another interesting feature of this piece that is guaranteed to surprise. Normally the hour hand on a watch advances slowly around the dial, landing exactly on the next hour mark as the minute hand reaches 60. But on this watch, the hour hand jumps directly onto the hour mark and remains there for the next 60 minutes. Thus, the hour hand moves only once every hour, at the moment when the minute hand in the small lower dial reaches 60. The so-called “jumping hour” complication has been integrated into this ingenious watch.
One of the major attractions of this piece is the stunning Aventurine dial that evokes the night sky and produces an effect that changes constantly according to the angle of the light.
The transparent rear cover of the watch showcases the classic beauty of the base movement by Frédéric Piguet, one of the finest movement makers in Switzerland’s Vallée de Joux region. Piguet has a long history of producing movement masterpieces and their calibers are the basis for watches made by Omega and other prestigious brands.
As a special hidden bonus for watch aficionados, the base movement driving Andersen’s Jour & Nuit is a classic movement from legendary movement manufacturer Frédéric Piguet, which was integrated by the leading brand Blancpain in 2010.
Grand Jour & Nuit#3/20
White gold Aventurine dial
This watch is available for viewing in the Gallery.
*Gallery viewings by appointment only
Case diameter 44 mm
18K white gold case
One of a worldwide limited edition of 20
Serial number on the case back
(No. 3 of 20)