7
7

MASTERWORKS OF TIME

A gold, rock crystal, enamel, mother of pearl and black onyx portico timepiece, Vacheron & Constantin and Verger Freres, retailed by Linzeler & Marchak, circa 1926
Estimate
280,000400,000
LOT SOLD. 531,000 GBP
JUMP TO LOT
7

MASTERWORKS OF TIME

A gold, rock crystal, enamel, mother of pearl and black onyx portico timepiece, Vacheron & Constantin and Verger Freres, retailed by Linzeler & Marchak, circa 1926
Estimate
280,000400,000
LOT SOLD. 531,000 GBP
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Treasures

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A gold, rock crystal, enamel, mother of pearl and black onyx portico timepiece, Vacheron & Constantin and Verger Freres, retailed by Linzeler & Marchak, circa 1926
in the form of a Chinese temple portico, the octagonal mother of pearl dial inlaid in hardstones with dragons and flaming pearls amidst billowing clouds, the bezel with diamond-set numerals, the Vacheron & Constantin 8-day movement with 17 jewels and lever escapement with cut bi-metallic balance, the portico case with hardstone and enamel cresting inlaid with flowers and supported on rock crystal pillars, the stepped plinth similarly inlaid and decorated, the movement signed Vacheron & Constantin, the case with Verger Freres lozenge and French assay stamps, signed Linzeler & Marchak and numbered 9399
19 cm. high
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

Provenance

Antiquorum, Geneva, 12th April 1987, Lot 160

Catalogue Note

The watchmaking firm of Vacheron & Constantin was established in 1819 by a partnership between the firm of Vacheron, founded in Geneva in 1755 by Jean-Marc Vacheron, and Francois Constantin. Renowned for the high quality of its watches and their movements, Vacheron & Constantin marketed their products throughout the world with the motto 'Do better if possible and that is always possible' and have an unbroken line of manufacture from 1755 to the present day.

Ferdinand Verger (1851-1928), was apprenticed at the age of eleven at the Parisian watchmaking firm of Lépine and just ten years later he established himself as a jeweller and watchmaker. He must have made quite an impression because in 1875 he became the Paris agent for Vacheron & Constantin, an association that was to last for sixty years. Verger assembled a group of exceptional in-house craftsmen who created cases and dials for Vacheron & Constantin movements using the finest hardstones, gemstones and precious metals. In 1911 he took into partnership his two sons and the firm became Verger Freres, their maker's mark changing from F.V. to V.F. at the same time. Their business went from strength to strength and, embracing the age of Art Deco, by the 1920s they were supplying major jewellery houses and retailers worldwide with their own designs.

Linzeler & Marchak was formed in 1922 as a short-lived partnership between Parisian jeweller Robert Linzeler and Russian jeweller Joseph Marchak. Working from their gallery at 4 rue de la Paix in Paris, they became famous for their fine Art Deco jewellery and desk clocks. In just three years they produced and sold some of the most outstanding pieces of the Art Deco age. Following the Paris Exhibition of 1925 the partnership was disolved but the business continued using the name Linezler & Marschak under the ownership of Joseph Marschak until 1927. The present timepiece, dating from 1926 was supplied by Verger Freres to be retailed by Joseph Marchak.

This jewel-like timepiece is one of the finest examples of the collaboration between Vacheron & Constantin and Verger Freres.  The symmetry of the case combined with the use of hardstones perfectly frames the inlaid dial with its diamond-set numerals. The Art Deco Chinese theme of the case was the height of fashion in Paris in the 1920s and is just as chic today. Almost certainly unique, this timepiece crosses the many boundaries of horology, design, jewellery and craftsmanship.

Treasures

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