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Watches Jewellery Hermès' Artistic Director Philippe Delhotal Talks Watches

Hermès' Artistic Director Philippe Delhotal Talks Watches

Hermès' Artistic Director Philippe Delhotal Talks Watches
Hermès Artistic Director Philippe Delhotal (Photo: Quang Fabien)
By Annie Darling
By Annie Darling
September 11, 2020
Responsible for the style direction of watches, the artistic director of leading luxury house Hermès discusses this year’s releases

Which novelty from Watches & Wonders 2020 is your favourite?

Arceau L’Heure de La Lune is our highlight because it runs counter to industry trends. We presented it last year in a limited edition and we had the great pleasure of being awarded by the Foundation of the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG).

We come back this year with new versions on lunar, Martian or Black Sahara meteorite dials. It’s both useful and mysterious. The complication is really playful, with counters gravitating around topsy-turvy moons. Hermès loves to dream with its head upside down.

Why is it important that Hermès continues to pull from its archives?

Indeed, our sources of inspiration are mainly based on the extraordinary creative wealth of the Hermès universe. Hermès watchmaking offers a different interpretation of time: a time full of fanciful touches, which goes well beyond style.

We don't seek to replicate what already exists. We want to be audacious and follow our intuition by creating objects that don't only indicate the time, but that tell stories.

See also: Richard Mille Introduces The RM 72-01 Lifestyle In-House Chronograph

Arceau Cheval Cosmique Aventurine by Hermès. (Photo: Studio des fleurs)
Arceau Cheval Cosmique Aventurine by Hermès. (Photo: Studio des fleurs)

Exceptional craftsmanship defines your brand...

Hermès has always been about craftsmanship. Our craftsmen bring about new approaches in terms of creativity. It is always a big challenge for them to work on a smaller scale but they appreciate this new field of expression.

These values are really showcased when we work on our exceptional objects, including Arceau Cheval Cosmique.

Slim d’Hermès by Hermès. (Photo: Joël Von Allmen)
Slim d’Hermès by Hermès. (Photo: Joël Von Allmen)

Which watch from this year’s novelties was the most challenging?

Arceau L’Heure de La Lune. It features a horological complication with a singular interpretation of the moon phases and a more daring graphic design. These new developments feature extremely rare celestial stones. The meteorite dials offer a unique and creative touch that lets everyone dream with their feet on the ground and their head in the sky.

Who wears Hermès's watches?

Wearing an Hermès watch is about appreciating a style that is rigorous but free of any formalism. It is about asserting oneself as a man or woman free of temporal constraints. He or she is relaxed and occasionally whimsical. It is about making light of time rather than seeking to dominate it.

Describe Hermès in five words.

Elegance, discretion, refinement, quality, unique.

What was the first watch you ever owned?

It was one I was gifted by my grandfather. This watch is what sparked my interest in watchmaking at such an early age.

See also: Watches & Wonders 2020: The Best New Watches From Piaget To Vacheron Constantin


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