Palazzo Odescalchi Piazza SS. Apostoli, 80
Remarkable and extremely rare collection of 1.241 Swatch
Single pieces, specials and limited editions and production models manufactured between 1983 and 1996, some complete with original presentation boxes.
The watches are all new and fully functional.
The collection presented here contains 1.241 lots from the production’s start (1983) until the end of 1996. Fourteen years of Swatch watches, all in their original packaging, NEVER USED. Probably the most famous Italian collection in private hands, many of of the lots have their guarantee certificates within the package, with its production and market numbering.
Overall, the “Art” Specials stand out for their rarity and preciousness.
The Kiki Picasso with its five colours is specimen No. 82/120. Work of the painter / graphic artist Christian Chapiron, the first artist to sign a Swatch. The strap bears his signature, the case, without numbers and codes on the back, is the initial one from 1983. During the IRCAM’s reception in Paris (Center National des Arts et de la Culture) at the Pompidou centre, the 120 watches were distributed to some eminent guests.
The 1985 Davos Symposium (made in only 200 copies) was given to the participating economists who gathered for the annual Forum, including Henry Kissinger. This copy is the first edition with the text on the dial.
Andrew Logan’s unobtainable Jelly Fish was released in London on May 31st 1985 in only 50 copies and was intended to reward the winners of the Alternative Miss World, sponsored that year by Swatch. The brooch-sculpture signed by Logan featured a fish-like construct with precious stones, glitter and pearls on the strap. On the back, next to the safety pin, Logan engraved his name and the acronym A.M.W. (Alternative Miss World).
The Oigol Oro, 1985, is the work of Mimmo Paladino, kept here in the original matte black box with warranty and certificate of authenticity. The specimen is part of the first of two series, with Arabic numbering, limited to 100 samples. The one at auction is number 27/100, intended – according to the documentation kept by the parent company - for the singer Madonna on the occasion of the V.I.P. party at the Martini terrace in Milan.
The four watches signed by Keith Haring, dated 1985-86, have a circulation of 9,999 copies and are among the most sought-after and rare on the market: the complete series was sold in 1991 by Christie’s London for about 12 million Lire.
The Rorrim 5 by Tadanori Yokoo is also extremely rare, made in 1987 in only 5000 copies. It was initially distributed only in Japan and later arrived in the European market as well. It has quotes of more than € 2000.
Also fascinating is the story of the 6 Black Puff intended for the American market (1988). The name of the collection, “Blow your time away”, recalls the peculiar characteristic of these watches: the presence of a tangle of angora hair (puff) in six different colours attached to a brass ring on the glass. We can translate the term “puff” with the term breath. The idea is to blow time away, and the angora hair is an invitation to get rid of the slavery of the hands. To read the time, you have to blow the hair off the clock face.
From the first Swatch released in the spring of 1983, GB101 code, to the latest Swatch X 007 series dedicated to James Bond and his undying movies (released in February 2020), these iconic objects useful for measuring time have always represented something more. The evolution of taste, the passions of at least two generations of loving collectors, the sudden transformations of objects that in measuring time also give us the measure of how long and how much we have changed since they first appeared on the market.
Furthermore, this extraordinary collection - which condenses and fully represents the first 14 years of Swatch - is the living and vital testimony of how fashionable and straightforward watches can describe, with their multifarious facets, the history of an entire society.