Shapes Within Shapes – A New Watchmaking Trend

There’s something happening with the watch industry about which you’re bound to find something you like. Why? Because thanks to trend evolution cycling its way through pretty much every imaginable (and one or two previously-thought unimaginable) case shapes, the latest fancy of designers on high seems to be to use them all at once.

I wouldn’t be surprised if that concept is hard to visualise at first, but it’s really very simple. I first became aware of this trend when I was reviewing last year’s Harmony Collection from esteemed watchmakers Vacheron Constantin.

Vacheron Constantin Watch

Vacheron Constantin is well known as the longest continuously operational watch company in the world. Whenever they do something new, it’s worth taking note. Quite obviously, their melding of classic forms into something quite traditionally and yet simultaneously very modern, has struck a chord with a few of their horological contemporaries.

Radomir Panerai GMT Watch

There is no prescribed need for a watch crystal to be round, but recent trends have seen a predominance of this shape flood the market. Because of this, cases tend to be round also, but that is not essential, even when sticking with a circular sapphire. As we can see in Panerai’s classic cushion-shaped case, the fusion of shapes can be very rewarding when done correctly. But it takes guts to mess with the blueprint. Those kind of risks can set a brand apart, imbue an otherwise muted dial with strength and character. It’s shooting for the moon, but a shot worth taking.

Louis Vuitton LV55 Watch

Vacheron Constantin are heading the trend seen recently in efforts by Le Rhone and Louis Vuitton LV55, of utilising multiple shapes and contrasting silhouettes in the same piece. Far from a mollycoddling tactic designed to pacify all-comers, this is a bold re-imagining of forms, a step into the sculptural realm, a chance for haute horlogerie to unbridle itself from years of reserved rhomboids, stuffy squares, and conservative circles.

And the thing I really like about these pieces is this: They will age well. They are, in my opinion, about as safe a bold design can get. Why? Because they don’t mess with conventions; they marry them. There is classic beauty and a youthful disrespect about the Harmony range. That’s a pretty much impossible balance to strike, but if any brand was capable of pulling it out of the bag it had to be Vacheron Constantin.

Le Rhone Watch

It’s quite possible we’ll see a lot more watches that utilise shapes within shapes to frame their mechanical marvels. It’s a simple, geometrically comfortable way of adding visual interest to an oftentimes neglected aspect of a watch’s personality. If you’re looking to invest in something a little different, but dedicatedly classical, check out this trend. You’re bound to like at least one of the shapes on show!

About the Author: Rob Nudds is a watchmaker and freelance writer based in the UK.

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RM Monaco Historique

1968 Ferrari 275 GTS4 NART Spider
Image 1 Photo Credit: Tom Gidden ©2016 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Monaco is the jewel of the French Riviera and every two years it is the host of the magnificent Monaco Historique in May. It is a weekend of classic car races held on the legendary street circuit. RM Auctions again return with a stunning line up of automobiles to be auctioned on May 14th.

1968 Ferrari 275 GTS4 NART Spider-1
Image 2 Photo Credit: Tom Gidden ©2016 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

1968 Ferrari 275 GTS/4 NART Spider

The star of the show is a stunning ‘last of the line’ Ferrari 275 GTS/4 NART Spider. The only NART Spider sold new in Europe, and the third-to-last 275-series Ferrari built, chassis no. 11057 is set to be one of the most valuable automobiles offered at auction in 2016.

The 1968 275 GTS/4 NART Spider is considered to be one of the most important road-going Ferraris in history, it is substantially rarer than virtually all of its iconic colleagues. Only ten were ever built as part of an ingenious collaboration between American Ferrari importer extraordinaire Luigi Chinetti and Enzo Ferrari, bearing the race-winning moniker of Chinetti’s North American Racing Team.

The example on offer is all the more special, as it is not only Ferrari Classiche certified and matching numbers, it is the last of the ten built, the only one delivered new to Europe, and the third from last 275-series Ferrari of any kind constructed.

The dark red metallic finish and beige interior are paired beautifully with the throaty 330-horsepower V-12 engine. The car is expected to fetch in excess of $22 million.

“It is a privilege to present this NART Spider, not only because of its importance and rarity, but also because its offering at auction is such an extraordinary event. Ownership of a NART Spider represents membership in a club of only nine other enthusiasts around the world,” said Rob Myers, Chairman and CEO, RM Sotheby’s. “If a Ferrari is the choice of car connoisseurs, then the NART Spider is the choice of Ferrari connoisseurs.”

1988 Porsche 911 Turbo ‘Ruf CTR’
Image 3 Photo Credit: Jonathan Green ©2016 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

1988 Porsche 911 Turbo ‘Ruf CTR’

If you grew up in the 1990’s you might remember a mystical video of a guy drifting a yellow Porsche around the Nurburgring Nordschleife – long before it was ‘the’ thing to do. Well that car was a Ruf CTR Yellow Bird. A title it earned after trouncing the opposition in a Road & Track magazine article titled, “The World’s Fastest Cars”. The Ruf CTR soared to a top speed of 211 mph, flying head and shoulders above the competition which included the Lamborghini Countach, Porsche 959 and Ferrari 288 GTO.

This particular CTR was born as a standard 911 Turbo in 1988 and was then immediately sent to Ruf to be upgraded to BTR specification, increasing power to 375BHP along with a 0–60 mph time of 4.3 seconds and a top speed of 190 mph. After three years in BTR configuration, the owner opted to further upgrade the performance to Ruf’s ultimate (and breathtakingly expensive) six-speed CTR specification in 1992.

Today, with only two registered owners, the most recent of whom purchased the CTR from its original keeper in 1994, the odometer shows just 51,000 kilometres, a guide of just $200,000 – $255,000 seems on the low side, don’t be surprised to see this sell for much more.

1984 Peugeot 205 Turbo 16 Evolution 1 Group B
Photo Credit: Toby Wright ©2016 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

1984 Peugeot 205 Turbo 16 Evolution 1 Group B

Group B is still one of the most exciting and dangerous periods of motorsports there has ever been. Huge leaps in technology created rally cars with power to rival F1 cars. Group B began in 1982 and lasted just five seasons. Arriving relatively late to the scene in 1984—the Peugeot 205 Turbo 16 Group B rally car was a winner from the start, winning 6 of the 11 WRC events held in 1985 alone.

This particular T16, serial number C11, was built by the Peugeot Talbot Sport team for the 1985 WRC season, to be driven by the 1981 World Champion Ari Vatanen. Ari won the 1985 Rallye Monte-Carlo and Swedish Rally with the car. One of only 20 Works 205 T16 Evolution 1 Group B cars the Turbo 16 has had only two owners since Peugeot Talbot Sport.

A reserve of $680,000 – $910,000 is about right for a car that will get you a nonstop stream of invites to car events all over the world.

1997 Porsche 911 GT1 Evolution
Photo Credit: Tim Scott ©2016 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

1997 Porsche 911 GT1 Evolution

Just 41 GT1s were produced – 18 racing cars and 23 streetcars, making the Porsche GT1 one of the rarest of all Porsche racing cars. Indeed, it is even rarer than its nemesis, the McLaren F1, of which some 107 examples of all varieties were produced.

A 600+ bhp, 3,164 cc air- and water-cooled horizontally opposed six-cylinder engine with two 3K turbochargers and Bosch electronic fuel injection inserted into a lightweight chassis proved a formidable partnership, the Gt1 weighted just 1050 kilograms, a little more than the McLaren F1, but as always there was good reason. By scaling 1050 kilograms, the GT1 would be allowed a larger air intake and could thus generate considerably more horsepower.

Never before offered for public sale, this exciting 911 GT1 Evolution is described as the only road-legal GT1 race car and is currently registered as such in the United Kingdom. It is supplied with a comprehensive file of restoration invoices and photographs as well as factory documents, including shop manuals. An extensive store of spare parts is available at additional arrangement. It is eligible for historic racing events such as the GT90s Series, the Daytona Classic, and the Goodwood Festival of Speed, as well as the race car class of any prestigious Concours d’Elegance.

An estimate of $3,000,000 – $3,400,000 may be a little ambitious, but then if the suns out, who knows what will happen in Monaco!

About the Author: 

Tim Hutton has been involved in the automotive industry for 17 years, creating ideas and content for premium brands. When not writing about cars, you will find him driving them all around the world. Having learned to drive at seven in a racing car, petrol is very much in his veins.

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May 2016 Auction Dates

April Auction Dates

AuctionAuction HouseVerticalDateLocationURL
Modern & Contemporary ArtHeritageFine Art & Antiques05/02/2016New YorkN/A
Importante Orfvrerie, Botes En Or Et Objets De VitrineSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/03/2016Parishttp://ow.ly/4ncDOy
Le Got FranaisChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/03/2016Parishttp://ow.ly/4ncFnU
Andy Warhol: MarilynChristiesFine Art & Antiques5/3/2016 - 5/12/2016Onlinehttp://ow.ly/4ncFrG
Post-War & Contemporary Art OnlineChristiesFine Art & Antiques5/3/2016 - 5/13/2016Onlinehttp://ow.ly/4ncFpY
Made In CaliforniaBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/04/2016Los Angeleshttp://ow.ly/4ncE8V
19Th Century European PaintingsBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/04/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncEcv
The Modern HouseBonhamsFine Art & Antiques05/04/2016Los Angeleshttp://ow.ly/4ncEe5
CurrencyHeritageCoins05/04/2016DallasN/A
Voyage Rome, Collection Particulire Italienne, Iime PartieSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/04/2016Parishttp://ow.ly/4ncEK2
Le Got FranaisChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/04/2016Parishttp://ow.ly/4ncFsR
Jewels OnlineChristiesPrecious Stones5/5/2016 - 5/12/2016OnlineN/A
Picasso CeramicsChristiesFine Art & Antiques5/6/2016 - 5/17/2016OnlineN/A
Art As JewelryChristiesFine Art & Antiques5/6/2016 - 5/18/2016OnlineN/A
American ArtHeritageFine Art & Antiques05/07/2016DallasN/A
African, Oceanic, And Pre-Columbian ArtSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/07/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncEMe
Malcolm Volume One: New YorkSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/07/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncEOH
Netsuke From A European Private CollectionBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/08/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncARn
Musical InstrumentsHeritageFine Art & Antiques05/08/2016DallasN/A
Bound To FailChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/08/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFuC
20Th Century & Contemporary Art Evening SalePhillipsFine Art & Antiques 05/09/2016New YorkN/A
Asian ArtBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/09/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncA4e
Impressionist & Modern Art Evening SaleSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/09/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncEQz
From Earth To FireSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/10/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncB71
Impressionist & Modern Art Day SaleSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/10/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncET7
Inspired Themes: A Fine Selection Of Chinese Works Of ArtChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/10/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBen
Jewellery & WatchesChristiesJewellery & Watches05/10/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBjN
Post-War And Contemporary Art Evening SaleChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/10/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFxk
European ModernismChristiesFine Art & Antiques5/10/2016 - 5/19/2016OnlineN/A
Antique Arms And ArmourBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/11/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncAUG
African & Oceanic ArtBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/11/2016Los Angeleshttp://ow.ly/4ncEhL
Impressionist And Modern ArtBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/11/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncEjb
Important Chinese ArtSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/11/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncB8a
A Private Jayer CollectionSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/11/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncB9g
Contemporary Art Evening AuctionSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/11/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncEWk
Chinese Ceramics, Works Of Art And Textiles Part IChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/11/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBni
The Dani & Anna Ghigo Collection:Part I: South East Asian, Himalayan And Indian Works Of ArtChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/11/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBpu
Post-War And Contemporary Art Morning SessionChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/11/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFzv
Post-War And Contemporary Art Afternoon SessionChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/11/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFBk
Fine Chinese ArtBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/12/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncAWd
Fine Japanese ArtBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/12/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncAYz
Modern Sporting GunsBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/12/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncAZT
Post-War & Contemporary ArtBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/12/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncEkY
Contemporary Art Day AuctionSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/12/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncEYx
The Dani & Anna Ghigo Collection: Part Ii: Oriental Carpets, European Furniture, Works Of Art & Tapestries, Chinese, Japanese & South East Asian Works Of ArtChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/12/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBrJ
Evolution Of Form: African & Oceanic Art At The Genesis Of ModernismChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/12/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFDl
Impressionist & Modern Art Evening SaleChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/12/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFFH
SportsHeritageMemorabilia5/12/2016 - 5/14/2016DallasN/A
ComicsHeritageMemorabilia05/13/2016Costa MesaN/A
20Th & 21St Century DesignHeritageFine Art & Antiques05/13/2016DallasN/A
Chinese Ceramics, Works Of Art And Textiles Part IiChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/13/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBu8
Impressionist & Modern Art Works On PaperChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/13/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFHy
Impressionist & Modern Art Day SaleChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/13/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFK5
ComicsHeritageMemorabilia5/13/2016 - 5/14/2016New YorkN/A
PhotographsPhillipsFine Art & Antiques 5/13/2016 - 5/19/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncA8M
Rm MonacoSotheby'sLuxury Vehicles05/14/2016Monacohttp://ow.ly/4ncDRF
Important WatchesSotheby'sJewellery & Watches05/14/2016Genevahttp://ow.ly/4ncDWu
Americana & PoliticalHeritageFine Art & Antiques05/14/2016DallasN/A
Start-Stop-Reset: 88 Epic Stainless Steel ChronographsPhillipsJewellery & Watches05/14/2016Genevahttp://ow.ly/4ncEH7
Bande DessineSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/14/2016Parishttp://ow.ly/4ncF0o
The Geneva Watch Auction: ThreePhillipsJewellery & Watches05/15/2016Genevahttp://ow.ly/4ncDUa
Rare Watches Including Important Private CollectionsChristiesJewellery & Watches05/16/2016Genevahttp://ow.ly/4ncFOi
Watches And Wristwatches Including The Collection Of A European NoblemanBonhamsJewellery & Watches05/17/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncA6S
Lapidary Works Of Art, Gemstones, Minerals And Natural HistoryBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/17/2016Los Angeleshttp://ow.ly/4ncEmK
20Th & 21St Century DesignHeritageFine Art & Antiques05/17/2016Beverly HillsN/A
Magnificent Jewels And Noble JewelsSotheby'sPrecious Stones05/17/2016Genevahttp://ow.ly/4ncF1Q
Fine And Rare WinesChristiesFine Wine05/17/2016Genevahttp://ow.ly/4ncFTq
19Th Century European ArtChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/17/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBvN
Design: CarpetsChristiesFine Art & Antiques5/17/2016 - 5/26/2016Onlinehttp://ow.ly/4ncFPX
Wine Online/LdnChristiesFine Wine5/17/2016 - 5/31/2016Onlinehttp://ow.ly/4ncFRW
British And European Ceramics And GlassBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/18/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncB1C
Instruments Of Science, Technology And Mechanical MusicBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/18/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncB2E
American ArtBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/18/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncErI
19Th Century European ArtSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/18/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncF36
American ArtSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/18/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncF4m
Fine And Rare WinesChristiesFine Wine05/18/2016GenevaN/A
Christie'S InteriorsChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/18/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBxk
Geneva Magnificent JewelsChristiesPrecious Stones05/18/2016Genevahttp://ow.ly/4ncFVg
Gold Boxes & SilverChristiesPrecious Metals05/18/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBHd
Latin AmericaPhillipsFine Art & Antiques 5/18/2016 - 5/24/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncE15
PhotographsSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/19/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncAHi
Prints & MultiplesChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/19/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBJl
The English Collector:English Furniture, Clocks, European Porcelain, Portrait MiniaturesChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/19/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBLh
American ArtChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/19/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFXq
Wines From The Cellar Of William I. KochSotheby'sFine Wine5/19/2016 - 5/21/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncF64
Fine & Rare Wine, Cognac And WhiskyBonhamsFine Wine05/20/2016Hong Konghttp://ow.ly/4ncEtn
Space ExplorationHeritageFine Art & Antiques05/20/2016DallasN/A
PhotographsChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/20/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBMR
Texas ArtHeritageFine Art & Antiques05/21/2016DallasN/A
Bande DessineChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/21/2016ParisN/A
Prints, Photographs And Works On PaperBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/22/2016Hong Konghttp://ow.ly/4ncEuy
Fine Oriental Rugs And CarpetsBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/23/2016Los Angeleshttp://ow.ly/4ncEvM
DesignSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/24/2016Parishttp://ow.ly/4ncE3Z
Music, Continental And Russian Books And ManuscriptsSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/24/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncAMU
Modern & Contemporary ArtHeritageFine Art & Antiques05/24/2016DallasN/A
Latin America: Modern Art | Latin America: Contemporary ArtSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/24/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncF9L
The D. Brent Pogue Collection, Masterpieces Of United States Coinage Part IvSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/24/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFbH
Old Masters & 19Th Century Art - (Including Dutch Impressionism)ChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/24/2016Amsterdamhttp://ow.ly/4ncG2G
Home & InteriorsBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 5/24/2016 - 5/25/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncAJE
Light Volume And Form: Works From The Shalom Shpilman CollectionChristiesFine Art & Antiques5/24/2016 - 6/2/2016Onlinehttp://ow.ly/4ncG0M
Africa NowBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/25/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncAOs
Fine Maritime Paintings & Decorative ArtsBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/25/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncEA6
19Th And 20Th Century SculptureSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/25/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBb1
19Th Century European PaintingsSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/25/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBcO
The Rarities AuctionSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/25/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFdA
Two Centuries Of American History: Highly Important Letters And DocumentsSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/25/2016New YorkN/A
Old Masters & 19Th Century Art - (Including Dutch Impressionism)ChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/25/2016Amsterdamhttp://ow.ly/4ncG4s
First Open HomeChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/25/2016Parishttp://ow.ly/4ncG78
Illuminated Manuscripts From The Collection Of Maurice Burrus (1882-1959)ChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/25/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBOl
Shakespeare: The Four FoliosChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/25/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBQa
Design Du SoirChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/25/2016Parishttp://ow.ly/4ncGbs
Latin American ArtChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/25/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncGe1
Arte Moderna E ContemporaneaSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 5/25/2016 - 5/26/2016Milanhttp://ow.ly/4ncFfs
TimepiecesHeritageJewellery & Watches05/26/2016New YorkN/A
Fine And Rare WinesBonhamsFine Wine05/26/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncB4r
Fine & Rare WinesBonhamsFine Wine05/26/2016San Franciscohttp://ow.ly/4ncECd
Master PaintingsSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/26/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFh0
Impressionist & Modern ArtSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/26/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncFj3
South Asian Modern + Contemporary ArtChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/26/2016LondonN/A
Latin American ArtChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/26/2016New Yorkhttp://ow.ly/4ncGgm
Arts Of IndiaChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/26/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncBSy
Modern And Contemporary South Asian ArtBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/27/2016Londonhttp://ow.ly/4ncB59
Finest & Rarest Wines: Direct From Great EstatesChristiesFine Wine05/27/2016Hong KongN/A
The Hong Kong Watch Auction: TwoPhillipsJewellery & Watches5/28/2016 - 5/30/2016Hong KongN/A
Asian 20Th Century & Contemporary Art (Evening Sale)ChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/28/2016Hong KongN/A
Fine & Rare WinesChristiesFine Wine05/28/2016Hong KongN/A
Fine Chinese Paintings And Southeast Asian ArtBonhamsFine Art & Antiques 05/29/2016Hong Konghttp://ow.ly/4ncEEj
Asian Contemporary Art (Day Sale)ChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/29/2016Hong KongN/A
Asian 20Th Century Art (Day Sale)ChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/29/2016Hong KongN/A
Chinese Contemporary InkChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/29/2016Hong KongN/A
Fine Classical Chinese PaintingsSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/30/2016Hong Konghttp://ow.ly/4ncFkx
Swiss ArtChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/30/2016ZurichN/A
Fine Chinese Classical Paintings & CalligraphyChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/30/2016Hong KongN/A
Important WatchesChristiesJewellery & Watches05/30/2016Hong KongN/A
30 Years: The SaleChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/30/2016Hong KongN/A
Livres Et ManuscritsSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/31/2016Parishttp://ow.ly/4ncE6L
Schweizer Kunst / Swiss ArtSotheby'sFine Art & Antiques 05/31/2016Zurichhttp://ow.ly/4ncFmf
Fine Chinese Modern PaintingsChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/31/2016Hong KongN/A
Hong Kong Magnificent JewelsChristiesPrecious Stones05/31/2016Hong KongN/A
Collection Jean-Paul JungoChristiesFine Art & Antiques05/31/2016Parishttp://ow.ly/4ncGkG

Featured Asset – 1955 Bentley Continental

1955 Bentley Continental

The R Type Continental coupe was reminiscent of the fast 1930s Bentley tourers, which were lower and sleeker than the sedans, with a curved windshield, streamlined form, long swooping tail and rear fender skirts. At its introduction, it was the fastest four-seater in the world with a top speed of 120 mph. The 1955 model was the first to include a 4.9 liter engine and a four-speed gearbox that could be floor- or column-shift.

Estimated Value: Up to $1,880,000

Upcoming Sale: ClassicDriver.com

Borro offers secure and flexible financing solutions for classic cars.

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How Do I Sell My Bentley?

How Do I Sell My Bentley?

How do I sell my Bentley?

A Bentley is more than a car. The way an antique candelabra is not just for lighting the dining room or a Rolex Oyster does not just tell the time, a Bentley does not just drive you from one place to another.

Bentley is one of several iconic British car brands that stand for luxury, quality and history. The brand itself is now owned wholly by Volkswagen and has been since 1998, having originally been taken over by fierce rivals Rolls-Royce in 1931.

Bentley’s pedigree was established through their success in the early days of the Le Mans endurance race with five victories between 1924 and 1930. Unfortunately the same success couldn’t be replicated away from the track, the financial turmoil of the 1929 crash resulting in the acrimonious sale of the company.

Read more

Why HNWIs Don’t Always Have High Credit Scores?

credit score

Everyone has a credit score, but not everyone understands just how they are determined. High-net-worth individuals can find themselves shocked when they apply for a loan and discover they aren’t approved because of a low credit score. Even HNWIs need to know what their credit score is, how various actions affect it and alternative options for financing if their score is low.

Finance Factors That Make a Difference

Basically, credit scores are determined by five main finance factors. Each of these factors carries a specific weight and is combined with other variables using a complicated (and very secret) algorithm. These five factors and their weight are as follows:

  1. Payment History (35%)
  2. Utilization (30%)
  3. History Length (15%)
  4. Types of Credit in Use (10%)
  5. New Credit (10%)

According to Credit Karma, no one factor in a credit score can work independently from the others, meaning it’s important to pay attention to all of the factors when looking at credit scores. Properly managing each aspect of one’s credit, makes it possible to gradually build or repair a credit score.

Payment History

Payment history is, hands down, the finance factor that is most heavily weighted in a person’s credit score. It accounts for approximately 35% of the score. With high-net-worth individuals, there are often numerous accounts open at one time and, more often than not, it’s not a matter of having the finances to pay the bills, it’s a matter of remembering to pay them on time. This can potentially affect their score in a big way. Depending on the individual’s situation, finding better ways to manage due dates is an essential step to a healthy score.

Credit Card Utilization

Credit card utilization is the second most heavily weighed finance factor in a credit score. Accounting for 30%, minor changes can make a big difference. This percentage of a credit score is determined by the amount owed in proportion to the amount of credit available. Keep in mind, this is calculated by the amount owed when the card company reports to the agencies, not the balance that is carried over each month. By regularly keeping credit card balances low, and paying the balance off each month, it is possible to maintain a higher credit score.

This is another area where high-net-worth individual’s credit score could be impacted. Because they have an abundance of discretionary income, these individuals are potentially high spenders. If this is the case and they aren’t regularly paying off their balance, it would have a negative effect on their score. Even if these individuals are paying off their balance every month, they may still be maxing out their credit line which, would have the same adverse effect on their credit score.

Length of Credit History

This finance factor finds an average age based on every account open. This factor accounts for 15% of a credit score and includes:

  • Credit card accounts
  • Mortgage accounts
  • Auto loans
  • Student loans
  • Any other lines of credit

It is for this reason, that it is ill-advised to close a credit card account that has been open for quite some time. This can have a significant negative affect on a credit score by reducing the available credit and average length of history as well as increasing the utilization percentage.

New Credit and Types of Credit in Use

These two finance factors each account for 10% of a credit score. The total number of accounts can attest to an individual’s credit worthiness, however, having too many new accounts can be reflected negatively when a lender is considering approval. It is recommended that applications for new credit are selectively submitted over a period of time. If a high-net-worth-individual does not demonstrate restraint when it comes to opening new lines of credit, they could fall victim to credit score demotions due to these factors.

What isn’t Included in a Credit Score?

Some high-net-worth individuals might be surprised to find that income, assets and net worth are three finance factors that aren’t included in a credit score. According to Spear’s and James Jones of Experian, finance records track and record debt, not wealth and assets. This is how many high-net-worth individuals find they have a low credit score. Simply having wealth does not automatically mean a good credit score comes with it. Since high -net-worth individuals rarely have a need to carry many credit cards or a mortgage, they can find themselves with a shockingly low credit score. There are alternative finance solutions for high-net-worth individuals with a low credit score.

With companies like Borro, high-net-worth individuals can raise capital from luxury assets. Borro can help high-net-worth clients by offering three types of services: Sale Advance, Bridge, and Term Loans. These services can help high-net-worth individuals gain the funds needed in a short amount of time with the help of luxury assets. There are a variety of luxury assets Borro lends on, including:

  • Fine art and antiques
  • Classic and luxury cars
  • Luxury watches
  • Jewelry and diamonds
  • Fine wine
  • Luxury handbags

How Do Sale Advance Loans Work?

With a Sale Advance Loan, a high-net-worth client can get immediate liquidity for up to 70% of the estimated price of the asset. This way, clients don’t feel rushed into a sale. Low fixed-interest rates and a 15% – 20% sales fee allow clients to maximize the final sale price of the asset. All interest and fees are taken from the final sale amount after the sale of the asset, which leaves the high-net-worth client with nothing to pay up front.

How Do Bridge Loans Work?

Bridge Loans allow wealthy clients to use their luxury assets to secure funding on a short-term basis. There are no credit checks or income checks and once the Bridge Loan is repaid, assets are returned.

Funds can be deposited into a client’s account in mere minutes after they approve a loan offer from Borro. Bridge Loans offer fixed interest rates of 2.99% – 3.99% per month, giving clients a consistent monthly payment that won’t increase over time. Loans are generally for a 6-month term, but these loans can be repaid at any time, with no fees for early payoff.

How Do Term Loans Work?

A Term Loan is a longer term finance solution that offers wealthy clients 18-month, 24-month, or 36-month contracts for loans larger than $100,000. Term Loans have a fixed-rate interest that will never increase from month to month. This allows wealthy clients to secure a larger amount of funding for any financial need they may have.

Where will Luxury Assets be Stored?

Clients are likely to be concerned about where their valuables will be stored. All luxury assets are stored in a high-security, state-of-the-art storage facility, which are climate controlled, fully insured. Specialized facilities are used for fine art, cars, fine wine and jewelry and watches.

Finding the right company to assist with alternative finance solutions for high-net-worth individuals is important. Regardless what product a client chooses to take advantage of, their information and luxury assets are always protected. Borro is dedicated to taking every precaution in their security practices to make sure clients, their information and their assets are kept confidential and secure 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

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Inside Watchmaking: A Case Coating Conundrum

Case making is an art, but it was not why people used to buy watches. The accuracy of timepieces in the early days was far less reliable than it is today, and, for that reason, a premium was placed on refined mechanisms. Watches were rarely used for sport and so case integrity was not so much an issue. But as time moved on, and the ability to guarantee excellent timekeeping became a common calling card, manufacturers started to get more creative with their case designs.

Schofield Watch

That’s why these days – much to the chagrin of the classicists – we’re used to seeing absolutely bonkers cases made from everything and coated in anything to set them apart from the competition. We’ve seen housings hewn from sapphire, forged carbon, polycarbonate, brand new materials like Morta, gold, silver, ceramic, tungsten, steel, titanium, platinum, aluminum… the list goes on and on. But what’s even more common than the case itself being made of something downright weird, is the ubiquity of surface coatings applied to a steel base.

Luminor Panerai Watch

DLC-coatings (Diamond-Like Carbon) give watches a black finish. And unlike PVD (Physical Vapour Deposition) DLC-coatings form a much tighter bond on the substrate, often resulting in a cleaner, more metallic result. The one aesthetic downside is that it’s only available in black, but that didn’t seem to bother the thousands upon thousands of consumers who rushed out to buy one of these stealthy timepieces.

MCT Frequential One F110

But was it good buy? How do these coatings wear and what is the potential for refinishing a damaged DLC-coated case? Will these items hold their value or will they fall out of favor as trends shift towards something new?

Beauty is More Than Skin Deep

The first problem is that PVD and DLC wear. Once the coating has been scratched away, reapplying the finish is incredibly difficult. It requires a total overhaul of the case. In most after sales departments I have seen, and in all of those in which I have worked, a damaged DLC-coated case goes nowhere but the trash can. Right now that’s not a huge problem for the consumer (although maybe their wallet). As long as brands stock the cases then that’s fine, but remember when buying a watch as an investment, brands are only bound to supply replacement parts for your timepiece for a specific amount of time (all brands vary on the number of years in question). If you’re looking for an heirloom, a coated watch may not be the way to go.

Moser Watch

That said, it is difficult to predict how the market will view this fad in the future. On the one hand, the relatively fragile nature of DLC might make perfectly preserved examples of this era extremely valuable. But I doubt these watches will never occupy the same level of desirability as a watch made of precious metal. They may capture a certain Zeitgeist, but they lack the inherent value, rarity, and sustainability of more classically composed pieces. That’s not to say rolling out one of these watches twenty years from now won’t garner a fond reception, it’s just unlikely to be reflected in inherent value retention.

About the Author

Rob Nudds is a watchmaker and freelance writer based in the UK.

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Pilkington Collection Invigorates Sotheby’s Important Chinese Art Auction

Yongle (1403-24) blue and white bianhu
Nicolas Chow, deputy director of Sotheby’s Hong Kong together with the Yongle (1403-24) blue and white bianhu or moonflask sold for HK$97m (£9.25m) on April 6.

The booming market for Chinese works of art that peaked in 2011 has been checked in recent years. The dwindling supply of top-quality material, an economic slowdown, issues of non-payment and a plague of confidence-sapping fakes have all taken their toll. But the emergence from obscurity of a time capsule collection that brings the perfect storm of provenance, rarity and attractive pricing is an opportunity not to be missed.

The centrepiece of Sotheby’s spring series in Hong Kong was the April 6 sale of Chinese ceramics formed by the English collector Roger Pilkington (1928-69) within a single decade from the late 1950s. Unseen for half a century, it was sold by a direct descendant. Nicolas Chow, deputy director of Sotheby’s Hong Kong, described it as “one of the greatest collections of Chinese porcelain left in private hands”.

Eton-educated Pilkington, who briefly worked for the family glassmaking firm in Lancashire, was one of a second generation of British enthusiasts who built their collections after the Second World War. With hindsight it was a collecting golden age and today many purchases – bought from the legendary London dealership Bluett & Sons at sums between £100 (approximately £3000 today) and £5000 (£140,000) – appear remarkable bargains.

moonflask from the collection of Roger Pilkington
The Yongle (1403-24) blue and white bianhu or moonflask from the collection of Roger Pilkington (1928-69) sold for HK$97m (£9.25m) at Sotheby’s Hong Kong on April 6.

Pilkington’s great love was the miraculous blue and white porcelains made in the Jingdezhen workshops for the Yongle (1403-24), Xuande (c.1424-35) and Chunghua (c.1464-87) emperors. This period of huge creativity saw mutual cross-fertilisation between the Middle and the Far East.

In both form and the complex geometric design, an elegantly potted 10in (25cm) Yongle bianhu or moonflask recreates in porcelain a Persian metalwork model. Only two similar flasks have been offered previously at auction and both in 1979 at a time when Japanese and Western buyers dominated the marketplace for Chinese works of art.

This particular example was first sold by Bluett in 1954 (for £285) and then again in 1962 when it was bought by Pilkington for £2750. Estimated at HK$25-35m, it sold to a buyer from the Greater China region for HK$97m (£9.25m).

The Yongle emperor, a devout Buddhist, commissioned many porcelains for ritual use. A group of 8in (21cm) pear-shaped rose water ewers with tapering spouts were among the most extraordinary. These are long revered and auspicious objects and the art-loving Qing emperor Qianlong (1735-95) chose one – probably the piece still in the Palace Museum, Beijing – to feature prominently in his portrait.

Now just three are known. Pilkington’s was formerly owned by HRN Norton, a dealer in London in the 1920s whose collection was sold by Sotheby’s in 1963. Then it sold to the celebrated New York dealer JT Tai for £1350, reselling at Christie’s in 1967 (for 4000 guineas) shortly before Pilkington acquired it for £5000. It was his most costly single purchase but 51 years later it would sell for a triple-estimate HK$87m (£8.3m).

The Yongle (1403-24) blue and white rosewater ewer
The Yongle (1403-24) blue and white rosewater ewer sold for HK$87m (£8.3m) at Sotheby’s Hong Kong on April 6. British collector Roger Pilkington (1928-69) bought it from London dealership Bluett & Sons for £5000 in 1967.

In total the Pilkington collection doubled its high estimate selling for a hammer total of HK$427.7m (£40.8m). Chow said: “the fact that this was totally fresh and unseen for the last 50 years gave so much energy to the room.”

About the Author

Roland Arkell (LinkedIn) is the Contributing Editor at ATG Media.  For almost two decades, Roland has been writing about the British and international art and antiques market for Antiques Trade Gazette, the leading publication for serious buyers and sellers of art and antiques.

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