We all have to face it at some point in our lives. We are not here to stay forever, our time is limited. Most people see this as a grim reminder of our mortal existence; others have a slightly less darkened view and seek to celebrate life, even the life of our deceased loved ones! The Día de los Muertos (Day of the dead) embodies that precise disposition. Romain Jerome once again reaches out to the Unesco “Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity” with three new versions of the Romain Jerome Día de los Muertos; the Clásico.
Technically, there is nothing shocking to report. Same Romain Jerome trademarks, time-only indications etc etc. Esthetically, a few things have obviously changed, one of which is pretty apparent; color, or lack thereof. Color is an important part of the Día de los Muertos festival, evident through the colorful sugar skulls (or Calaveras) and the bright costumes people wear during the festivities.
Whereas the first versions of the Día de los Muertos all shared the same basic design in their decoration, the new Clásico models have been set apart a bit more from earlier versions. The decoration of the bezel is the same in each one, being adorned with floral engravings and miniaturized sugar skulls. The difference however, lies within each dial as some are quite discretely (if you can call an RJ discrete at all) decorated with a variety of precious stones. The large skull-shaped applique is adorned with a champlevé decoration with cold-enameled details in silver. It is surrounded by engraved miniature skulls, evenly spread over the rest of the dial.
The first model of the Clásico received a rather interesting “grill” with 16 diamonds used for the teeth. This touch is quite inconspicuous at first, against the all-black background of the dial and case. The second and third versions of the Clásico feature an applique and RJ-cross on the dial with 532 black spinels and again 16 diamonds for teeth or 158 rubies on the RJ-cross and the teeth. Each of the Día de los Muertos Clásico have black satin brushed hands, coated with a blue luminous material.
In terms of size, the original Día de los Muertos measured 46mm in diameter, while the case for the new Clásico is slimmed down to a more “classical” 43mm. Many of the hardcore watch enthusiasts still consider this rather large but knowing Romain Jerome this is a very moderate dimension. Remember the Steampunk Chrono Blue for instance, which measured a massive 50mm. It does make it more wearable on an everyday basis; we’ve got to hand it to them at least for that. The steel case receives a PVD coating, and features the trademark claws holding the bezel in place.
An automatic time-only movement inside, the RJ002-A, with an hour and minute hand placed in the center of the dial. It operates at a rate of 28,800 v/h and has 40 hours pf power reserve. Each Día de los Muertos Clásico comes attached to a black alligator strap and is limited to 99 pieces. Prices range from 16.500 Euros for the diamond-toothed version, to 21.950 Euros for the ruby encrusted version and 33.500 Euros for the one with the spinel and diamonds encrusted applique and cross. More information: Romain Jerome.