Now, the SIHH can truly stun you, with all its exciting novelties, its lights and the diamonds (because yes, there is plenty of diamonds!)
Among all the glitters, despite this does not correspond to my personal taste at all, I must confess that Richard Mille’s Tourbillon Fleur is something which cannot go unnoticed – together with Roger Dubuis’ Exclalibur Brocéliande, quite an epic creation I have to say.
The Tourbillon Fleur is a watch which personality, which imitation of Nature, is capable of blurring the dividing lines between artistic creativity and life itself.
The new RM 19-02 Tourbillon Fleur epitomizes the horological artistry’s traditions of capturing the very substance of life using mechanical means (traditions which trace back to the Age of Reason) in a vibrant expression of watchmaking distinctive to Richard Mille’s vision of timekeeping in the 21st century.
For the creation of this timepiece a special flower, the Magnolia, which delicate appearance stands in sharp contrast to its strong organic structure and resilience in difficult environments, in an endless cycle of birth and regeneration, has been chosen.
At the lower left of the dial on the RM 19-02 we see the Magnolia surrounding a flying tourbillon escapement with five delicate, hand created and colored petals. Working either in passing, or on demand using the pusher at 9 o’clock, the Magnolia opens and closes with rhythmic regularity in a delicate kinetic ballet, as brilliantly shown in Hodinkee’s video:
However, if you look very closely, you will see that the Magnolia does not just open, the entire flying tourbillon with its stone set stamen actually moves upwards 1mm when fully opened, exactly copying the natural motion of the flower’s arching upwards of its stamen to increase its chances of pollination. Attention to details such as these exemplify the Richard Mille approach to watchmaking artistry on every level.
As for the technical mastery behind this unique grade 5 titanium tourbillon caliber, a complex mechanism comprising 5 levers surrounds the underside of the petals, and yet another system combined with a long pinion is used to raise the flying tourbillon and stamen upwards within the flower’s circumference – all using energy supplied by a separate, second winding barrel. As an added attention to the tiniest details, it is even possible to adjust the opening and closing cycle
The RM 19-02 Fleur is limited to a production of 30 pieces worldwide.