Reshaping the display of time into a human-like facial expression, Russian independent watchmaker Konstantin Chaykin has been creating his Clown/Joker watch since 2017. It has been an unexpected success for sure, with numerous iterations since, and even clinching the Audacity Prize at the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Geneve. To this day, it remains a fascinating collection of watches and every now and then a new edition is introduced. Taking inspiration from comic book villains, Halloween or Bram Stoker’s Dracula, the Joker watch concept is extremely versatile. The latest in a long line of character watches is the Konstantin Chaykin Grimaldi the Clown, paying tribute to one of the most popular English entertainers.
Now, there’s nothing entirely new about this “Grimaldi the Clown” watch, as it has the same original display as used in most of the other Joker-based models. It is however the first time the watch is actually inspired by a non-fictional character, instead of a comic book character, a jack-o-lantern or a mythological beast. The Konstantin Chaykin Grimaldi the Clown honours one of the greatest entertainers who ever lived; Joseph Grimaldi.
Joseph Grimaldi, through his alter-ego Grimaldi the Clown, was a pioneer in the art of clownery, giving substance to the character beyond what people had previously seen or experienced. Inspired by Grimaldi’s catchphrases “Shall I…?” and “Here we are again!”, Konstantin Chaykin honours the artist by creating a Grimaldi-like face out of the Joker dial. The signature white, red and blue makeup worn by Grimaldi the Clown is turned into a silvery-white base dial with a guilloché decoration. This dial is enlivened with red “cheeks”, a pair of eyebrows and a blue plaque carrying the master watchmaker’s name and logo.
As always, time is displayed through discs made to look like eyes. The left eye shows the hours, while the right one displays the minutes. The mouth at the bottom, complete with red lipstick outline and a set of teeth, doubles as the moonphase. As time passes through the day, the facial expression is ever-changing. This whimsical dial is set in a 42mm wide steel case with a sapphire crystal on top and a see-through caseback. The bezel is decorated with notches and engravings. The sapphire crystal caseback reveals the full rotor that brings energy to the movement.
Konstantin Chaykin uses an ETA 2824-2 movement as a base and fits an in-house module on top. The module is constructed with 61 components, including 6 additional jewels over the 25 jewels the ETA movement uses. The movement runs at a rate of 28,800vph and offers 38 hours of power reserve. The full rotor carries Grimaldi’s name, along with the name of Konstantin Chaykin, The centre of the rotor is styled to resemble the top of a circus tent.
The Konstantin Chaykin Grimaldi The Clown is presented on a black alligator leather strap with red lining and stitching. It is limited to just 38 pieces, with a price of EUR 12,500.
For more information, please visit Chaykin.ru.