As an archetype of the modern approach to watchmaking introduced by Gérald Genta, the Octo (for octagonal) case continues to draw on its good fortune in being born under the sign of the figure 8, regarded as a lucky number in China. Its design celebrates an architectural design placing function in the service of aesthetics by giving pride of place to geometrical shapes, pared-down surfaces and visible frame structures. On this gleaming “solar” model, the additional studs powerfully reinforce the functional nature of the bezel.
The Octo Tourbillon Sunray celebrates the return of yellow gold for Gérald Genta. Its case glows with the radiance of the brilliant-polished middle. It wears a singularly contrasting bezel in satin-brushed gold encrusted with gold studs like a halo. Looking down from its zenith, the “sun watch” focuses the piercing gaze of its hawk’s eye set at the heart of the beaded crown. This stone symbolizing an open-minded attitude toward new ideas is a fitting emblem indeed for Gérald Genta!
The dial composed of two superimposed gold plates affords the sight of an unexpected solar eclipse. Above the black-lacquered base with its minute track hovers an ingeniously cloisonné-worked depiction of the daystar. The luminosity of yellow gold bursts forth from the shade of the black lacquer on four depth-engraved triangles, on the raised retrograde hour numerals, and on the dauphine-shaped hands. Revealed through an octagonal opening at 6 o’clock, the tourbillon is distinguished by a sapphire bridge that makes it seem to be of the flying kind. An anti ultraviolet-ray treatment slows down the drying of oils and thereby prolongs the longevity of the legendary mechanism.
The tourbillon is a long-established specialty for Gérald Genta, which was one of the first brands to produce a self-winding tourbillon mechanism in 1990. The one powering the Octo Tourbillon Sunray comprises a perfectly integrated retrograde hour display and boasts a substantial 64-hour power reserve. It is also remarkable in terms of its slender construction (5.9 mm thick). Developed and crafted within the Manufacture, the movement is enriched by signature fine watchmaking finishes such as circular graining, beveling, polishing, circular satin brushing or hand-drawn flanks. In an ultimate touch of class, it is clothed in the classic Gérald Genta “old gold”, the “Potter finish” created by the brand in tribute to the colour of antique movements.
The Octo Tourbillon in yellow gold comes on a deep black creased crocodile leather strap. Prospective owners may choose the pink gold version or the “tri-composite” model with a platinum case middle, tantalum bezel and white gold studs. The latter is further enlivened by a black and red lacquered white gold dial and matching red strap.