Source: Images and content by Vacheron Constantinhttp://content.presspage.com/uploads/1999/500_16-maison1755-anencounterbetweenmdaandgreatcivilisations.jpg?10000
- Vacheron Constantin unveils Maison 1755, its largest immersive experiential space in China, at the historical Zhangyuan site in Shanghai.
- Maison 1755 showcases beautiful high watchmaking through curated rooms filled with extraordinary timepieces, interactive installations, art exhibitions, as well as exclusive client-centric services.
- The four-storey space captures the quintessence of Beautiful High Watchmaking, as well as the Maison’s 2022 “The Anatomy of Beauty®” theme.
Swiss Haute Horlogerie manufacturer Vacheron Constantin unveils Maison 1755 at Zhangyuan in Shanghai, China. This four-storey mansion, the Maison’s largest immersive experiential space in China, pays a remarkable tribute to its time-honoured watchmaking art and demonstrates its enduring quest for excellence, innovation and artistry. Embellished with meticulous designs that creatively portray Vacheron Constantin’s different facets, Maison 1755 creates a multisensory experience that sheds light upon the minute details, meanwhile showcasing beautiful high watchmaking through curated rooms filled with extraordinary timepieces, interactive installations, art exhibitions, as well as exclusive client-centric services.
With an uninterrupted history of more than 267 years since its inception, Vacheron Constantin now presents Maison 1755: a limited-time experiential space at building No. 16 of Zhangyuan that encompasses a full portfolio of watch collections, wondrous themed rooms, recreational areas, as well as thoughtfully-curated art exhibitions. Historically in Shanghai, Zhangyuan was known as one of the trendiest neighbourhoods for younger generations in the late Qing Dynasty and was hailed as the place of “superlatives”: it was the largest, best-preserved and most dynamic social community at that time. The rejuvenated Zhangyuan now encompasses a diverse range of historical compounds with great architectural details, a perfect incarnation of Vacheron Constantin’s “The Anatomy of Beauty©” theme for 2022.
Perpetual commitment to art & culture
Throughout its history, Vacheron Constantin has demonstrated a deep commitment to art and culture, exemplified through multiple strategic collaborations. As an example, its relationship with the Louvre Museum and Homo Faber is a natural extension of the celebration towards craftsmanship, beauty, as well as unwavering dedication to the conservation, preservation and transmission of heritage. In the same vein, the establishment of the Maison 1755 in the historical Zhangyuan site is in line with Vacheron Constantin’s artistic and cultural commitment, creating the opportunity for visitors to explore in depth the technical excellence and aesthetic sophistication inherent in the Maison’s centuries-old history.
Dubbed the “No.1 public garden of Shanghai” in late Qing dynasty, Zhangyuan was historically home to photography, film, and floral festivals; the earliest amusement and exhibition space; as well as the most diverse shikumen compound in the city, with an architectural style featuring various Western and Chinese elements. It provides a glimpse of Shanghai’s rich architectural past and is also said to be the place where the awareness of “Shanghainese” first emerged. Now a role model among urban regeneration projects in Shanghai, Zhangyuan becomes a calling card for the city’s ongoing upgrade. In keeping with the Maison’s grand vision to preserve culture and heritage, the establishment of Maison 1755 strikes a perfect chord with the profound sense of heritage, aiming to promote art, creation, and beauty through a multi-dimensional approach.
Maison 1755: an immersive experiential space
Nestled at building No.16 of Zhangyuan in Shanghai, the four-storey Mansion 1755 mansion welcomes the multiple expressions of horological finesse by Vacheron Constantin, a space in which to encounter time, art, and culture. The versatility and aesthetics of timepieces are seamlessly incorporated into every interior design of Maison 1755, paying homage to the Maison’s far-reaching heritage and fine craftsmanship.
First floor, “Inspiration Area”
The first most immediately striking element of Maison 1755 is the “Discovery Loupe”, involving striking motion pictures delineating each floor of the building. Described as “The Inspiration Area”, the first floor welcomes a series of art installations: the one at the entrance is titled “The Art of Watchmaking”, featuring a larger-than-life Overseas timepiece occupying the entire entrance hall that both greets and astounds visitors. The same vision is extended in the next room by a mirror-like surround-style “Labyrinth of Inspirations” in which “The Anatomy of Beauty®” themed video is loop-played to enable a vivid discovery of miniature beauty. Rarely seen Heritage timepieces are on display in “The Traces of Heritage” room, where the abundant historical archives are presented in “mixed reality” mode, with archive documents floating through the air, while guests touch the “Book of Light” to make the information visible on the wall. In the “The Bridge to Manufacture” room, images and videos transport one to the workbenches of master watchmakers in Geneva, revealing the making of beautiful High Watchmaking creations. While enjoying a rest on the generous sofa, visitors can enjoy the “Universe of Sound”, providing a visual feast of the minute repeater calibre via a gigantic hanging LED screen, accompanied by an acoustic immersion into the art of minute repeater chiming.
Second floor, “High Watchmaking Area”
The second floor of Maison 1755, or the High Watchmaking Area, consists of a variety of galaxies respectively showcasing the iconic Égérie, Overseas, Fiftysix® and Métiers d’Art collections. At the “Fiftysix® Recording Studio”, visitors can appreciate the exclusive charm from the collections’ timepieces through an interactive recording experience, especially in a room inspired by the Maison’s partner Abbey Road Studios. Imbued with feminine grace and temperament, “Égérie: The Atelier of Creation” is dedicated to the Égérie collection and savoir-faire. “Zeus”, the haute couture dress designed by Maison’s One of Not Many talent Yiqing Yin, is specially put on exhibition in this room, which powerfully interprets the values shared by Haute Horlogerie and Haute Couture. The “Overseas: Unlimited Explorations” room a unique vision inspired by the Overseas collection: with its rocky jagged landscapes and dreamy snow, the chamber provides a delightful immersion into stunning natural scenery and demonstrates the beauty of risk and the unexpected, honouring the spirit of exploration. “An Encounter Between Métiers d’Art and Great Civilisations” presents incredible full-set timepieces from the latest collaboration with the Louvre Museum, conveying profound artistic culture and a vibrant human spirit. The main wall features a drawing of the east façade of the Louvre, while the ceiling’s design is subtly inspired by the famous Glass Pyramid window. As a demonstration of the Maison’s commitment to client-centric services, “The Watchmaker Workshop” is open to the public, providing a dialogue between clients and the in-house master watchmaker, as well as two connoisseur lounges, “The Boudoir” and “Connoisseurs’ Club”, dedicated to exclusive appreciation experiences.
Third floor, “The Recreational Area”
Located on the third floor, the “Classics: The Design Gallery” features taut lines and soft curves, inspired by the extraordinarily painstaking attention lavished on the design and components of Patrimony and Traditionnelle collections. Equipped with a special interactive wall, this room also invites visitors to create their customised minimalist “line and curve” art piece through body movements. “The Apprentice’s Lab” indulge young future watchmakers with a chance to do watch sketching and colouring. Once completed, their artworks can be projected onto a special animation screen and “fly” around the room. “La Table 1755” and “The 1755 Lounge” are specially designed for this mansion, making onsite banquet and tea breaks available for special guests. The interior wall of each space is well-designed, characterised by the blend of Maltese cross and Chinese knot that is a novel motif created by the Maison, extending Vacheron Constantin’s ingenuity to encompass both Haute Horlogerie artistry and traditional Chinese aesthetics.
Fourth floor, “The Art Stage”
As a particular highlight, Vacheron Constantin invited artists from the Central Academy of Fine Arts to specially curate a joint exhibition titled “Beauty in Details”, for the opening months of Maison 1755. An array of artworks has been created or assembled to celebrate attentiveness to detail, also representing a tribute to “The Anatomy of Beauty®” in the language of contemporary art.
“We are delighted to welcome connoisseurs and watch lovers to Maison 1755 at Zhangyuan to enjoy close-up look enabling them to appreciate the technical excellence and reﬁned aesthetics of Vacheron Constantin.” said Mr. Frank BRAILLARD, Managing Director of Vacheron Constantin China.
In November 2022, Vacheron Constantin is unveiling Maison 1755, its largest immersive experiential space in China, in a historical mansion in the Zhangyuan area of Shanghai. As a place to encounter time, art and culture, the four-storey Maison 1755 showcases unparalleled historical archives, exciting innovations, exquisite masterpieces and client experiences in an exceptionally ingenious way, which captures the quintessence of Beautiful High Watchmaking, as well as the Maison’s 2022 “The Anatomy of Beauty®” theme. Epitomising the glory of Vacheron Constantin’s heritage, it is an ideal place for guests to revel in the Maison’s world of Haute Horlogerie.
The Anatomy of Beauty®
The Maison 1755 perfectly illustrates the Vacheron Constantin’s 2022 “The Anatomy of Beauty®” theme, celebrating attentiveness to detail. This extraordinarily painstaking care is expressed through the designers’ aesthetic choices and preferences as well as in the meticulous finishing work performed by the artisans. All the components of a Vacheron Constantin watch benefit from this scrupulous attention, even those that remain invisible once the movement has been assembled. A keen eye will note the fine guilloché work on a dial or the gem-set minutes track; it will make out the contours of the Maison’s Maltese cross emblem on the links of a bracelet; it will notice the small flame-blued screw serving as a seconds indicator on a tourbillon carriage and the mirror polish of a minute-repeater hammer; it will appreciate the artisans’ delicate touch when chamfering a plate or rounding off a bridge; and finally, it will admire the miniature enamel painting depicting a ship tossed around by a stormy sea streaked with lightning. At Vacheron Constantin, concern for detail delicately shapes an anatomy of beauty in which nothing is left to chance.
With a total site area of over 40,000 sqm, Zhangyuan sits on four land parcels in the core area of Nanjing Road West, currently owned by Shanghai Jing’an Urban Renewal Construction Development Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of Jing’an Real Estate Group. The area, comprising 43 shikumen blocks of around 170 historic buildings of 28 different styles, is the largest, best-preserved and most diverse shikumen compound in Shanghai. It presents a wide variety of architectural styles, from garden villas with Western elements to shikumen with traditional Chinese interiors. The area provides a valuable snapshot of Shanghai’s rich architectural past and has become known as the “Best Garden in Shanghai”. This project not only gives Swire Properties a unique opportunity to participate in the urban regeneration and revitalisation of historical architecture in Jing’an District. The aim is to revitalise Zhangyuan into a vibrant lifestyle hub by fully preserving and restoring the shikumen houses and making full use of the underground area. With an expected gross floor area (above ground) of approximately 60,000 sqm, the urban revitalisation project will create a world-class cultural innovation venue, high-end office spaces, unique residential apartments, a boutique hotel and a wide variety of exciting retail and dining options. The more than 70,000 sqm underground area will connect to three Metro lines (2, 12 and 13) at Nanjing Road West station and enjoy seamless access to nearby communities.
About Vacheron Constantin
Founded in 1755, Vacheron Constantin is the world’s oldest watch Manufacture in continuous production for over 267 years, faithfully perpetuating a proud heritage of watchmaking excellence and stylistic sophistication through generations of master craftsmen.
At the pinnacle of Haute Horlogerie and understated elegance, the Maison creates timepieces with unique technical and aesthetic signatures, and an extremely high level of finishing touches.
Vacheron Constantin brings to life unparalleled heritage and a spirit of innovation through its collections: Patrimony, Traditionnelle, Métiers d’Art, Overseas, Fiftysix, Historiques and Égérie. It also offers its discerning clientele of connoisseurs the rare opportunity to acquire vintage pieces within the Les Collectionneurs assortment, as well as unique and bespoke timepieces by means of its Les Cabinotiers department.
Time & Date: 27 November 2022 – 31 May 2023 10:00-22:00
Location: No.W16, Zhangyuan, Lane 588 Weihai Road, Shanghai, China