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From Automata to Mechanical Timepieces, Jaquet Droz Celebrates 275 Years

By Charlotte Kinberger

October 22, 2014

In 1738, Pierre Jaquet-Droz began creating automated porcelain dolls and musical watches that would quickly captivate the royal courts of Europe and China. Since then, the brand under his name, Jaquet Droz, has narrowed its creations to exquisitely crafted timepieces, but the creativity and ingenuity of the designs remain. To celebrate 275 years of this history, the brand has curated a traveling exhibition of objects past and present. The “Enchanted Journey Exhibit,” which has already travelled to Moscow, Basel, Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Macau, has taken up residence at The Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas, where it will stay until November 12. It will then continue to the Middle East and Europe after it leaves the United States.

The show is located in front of the Tourbillon boutique, a luxury retailer specializing in watches. The history of the brand is illustrated through intricately ornate enamel, stone, and hand-painted porcelain pocket and wristwatches, among other objects, dating from the 18th century to today. In addition to timepieces and trinkets, the exhibition features the automata for which Jaquet Droz first garnered attention. Among these is a golden birdcage with two small taxidermy birds of blue and green that dance and sing, as well as a few humanoid automata. Certainly not every watchmaker can boast such an array of interesting objects in their histories.

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Jaquet DrozPierre Jaquet-DrozThe Shops at CrystalsTourbillon


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