Shakudo itself isn’t a method, but more a material. It is a metallic alloy that is mostly copper with roughly 4-10% stone. What is special about the alloy is that it may be treated to achieve a black patina that in many ways resembles lacquer. Why is this significant? It is about being able to engrave something using a rich level of detail as well as a good deal of visual comparison. Black from the aluminum color offers that level of contrast minus the exceptional black patina properties of shakudo that black may only be reached by adding black color. The accession of such pigment (using lacquer for example) reduces the capability for an artist to flaunt fine detail.Thus, shakudo allows for the display and engraving of exceptionally fine detail in small spaces with an awesome level of comparison. To put it differently, images engraved in shakudo really pop. Even these two Blancpain Villeret Shakudo watches offer unique presentations of this method, which means that there’s variety within this set.
Star Wars fever is back this year, as later in 2015, the popular science fiction movie franchise sees its seventh film with Star Wars: The Force Awakens. We recently learned that Nixon from California will be producing some exclusive Star Wars watches, and it is no secret that many modern, avant-garde luxury watches were inspired by story universes such as Star Wars and Star Trek. To that end, we wanted to see what it might be like to have Star Wars watches produced by some of the more popular and “mainstream” luxury Swiss watch makers – which is the subject of this installment of “Watch What-If.”
Once again, the art and concepts are by Niklas Bergenstjerna – who worked with us to create these five fantasy Star Wars watches by Swiss watch brands you know. The idea is that the characters who inspired these watches might very likely actually wear them (if either were to exist). I hope that these fit into the almost religious “Star Wars canon.” Here are words directly from Mr. Bergenstjerna:
Omega Jedi-Master Watch: Yoda
Above, you’ll find a minimalistic classic watch for Jedi Master Yoda, that is ceramic and made to last for a very long time. No fuss, just the time in the Jedi-Master watches. Less is more. Though, an additional digital ”wood-cord-watch” is useful when leaving Dagobah for other places in the universe. The crest of the Jedi Council and Yoda’s personal crest are on the dial, and there is a classic Yoda quote on the bezel.
Bell & Ross Death & Star Pocket Watch – Darth Vader
Classic timepiece for an elderly villain, so Darth Vader gets a pocket watch. The watch has a Force detector, just in case your own abilities should fail. Design is inspired by the Death Star.
Hublot Big Bang Bounty Hunter – Boba Fett
A bold digital daily beater for the bounty hunter in need of keeping deadlines. Boba Fett would approve. The symbols in the center and the upper left corner are from Boba Fett’s armor: a Mandalorian crest and skull.
Blancpain Naboo Watch – Queen Amidala
Queen Amidala’s make-up was the inspiration for the overall white design with details in red. The Naboo royal crest is in the center of the dial, along with details in lace.
Zenith Star Pilot Parsec – Han Solo
A transparent Zenith “modern” pilot watch with a Han Solo quote. Parsec meter subsidiary dial is for racing, and no need for a crown, since it’s adjusted by touch on the right side of the case. Large asteroid crater dial and Rebel Alliance strap.
Niklas Bergenstjerna is a freelance graphic designer and watch lover based in the south of Sweden. niklex.com