At MB&F we turn traditional watchmaking of the highest craftsmanship into futuristic, fiercely unconventional timekeeping machines.
LEGACY MACHINE N. 1
The main features of Legacy Machine No.1 are the large 14mm “flying” balance wheel, its one-of-a-kind vertical power reserve indicator and the completely independent dual time zones.
Combined with the fine-finished movement and round case – MB&F’s first! – LM1 is a sublimation of classical excellence and traditional watchmaking, but remains an authentic three-dimensional MB&F Machine.
LM1’s movement bears testimony to the talent of its creators Jean-François Mojon and Kari Voutilainen. Geneva waves, highly polished gold chatons and bridges with impeccably executed bevels following deliberate internal angles showcase the absolutely peerless fine-finishing. LM1 was awarded the Public Prize (voted for by horology fans) and the Best Men’s Watch Prize (voted for by the jury) at the 2012 Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève.
The Legacy Machine N°1 Final Edition brings the LM1 series to a close, and does so with the signature MB&F flair for the unexpected.
LEGACY MACHINE N. 2
MB&F celebrates the pioneering works of past masters and complications with Legacy Machine No.2.
Suspended high above the dial, the double “flying” balances are in fact the most visible parts of two fully independent regulating systems, each beating at its own rate. The planetary differential sits proud of the surface, supported by a stunning double-arc mirror-polished bridge. The complex differential is the key element in the double regulator system: the rates are averaged out by the mechanism, which drives the blued gold hour and minute hands of the white stretched-lacquer sub dial. To make things just a bit more complicated, the two flying balances and their escapements are identical mirror images, right down to the position of the stud holders pinning their balance springs.
LEGACY MACHINE PERPETUAL
With Legacy Machine Perpetual, MB&F and independent watchmaker Stephen McDonnell have reinvented one of the most complex traditional watchmaking complications: the perpetual calendar.
The result is Legacy Machine Perpetual, featuring a visually stunning in-house movement, developed from the ground up to eliminate the drawbacks of conventional perpetual calendars. The 581-component, fully integrated and purpose-built movement of Legacy Machine Perpetual has been designed for user-friendly and trouble-free use: thanks to an innovative “mechanical processor” (patent pending), no more skipping dates or jamming gears, and the adjuster pushers automatically deactivate when the calendar changes, so no problems there either.
LEGACY MACHINE 101
Like its big brother Legacy Machine No.1 (44mm), LM101 (40mm) is dominated by a suspended “flying” balance wheel, its sedate oscillations drawing the eye ever closer. Two pristine-white subdials are placed underneath: at the top right, hours and minutes are displayed by blued-gold hands, while the 45-hour power reserve indicator is displayed in a smaller, but similar subdial below. In an apparent feat of magic, the domed sapphire crystal protecting the dial appears to be invisible.
Turning over, the display back crystal reveals the exquisitely hand-finished movement. Curved plates and bridges designed by award-winning independent watchmaker Kari Voutilainen pay homage to the style found in high quality historic pocket watches.
In 2009, MB&F had called on Silberstein to create its very first piece of ‘Performance Art’; the result was the HM2.2 ‘Black Box’, followed by a long list of collaborations with other creators.
For this new Performance Art series, Silberstein has taken our classic Legacy Machine No.1 and imbued it with his unique flair for the unconventional. His use of his signature three bright colours and shapes: red, blue and yellow; triangle, rectangle and circle for the hands and dial markers; and three-dimensionally translated as a cone, cube and sphere for the power reserve, catch the eye as they contrast against the more subdued movement plate below.
HMX & STARFLEET MACHINE - BLACK BADGER EDITION
For the Performance Art collection, James Thompson – aka Black Badger – has reinterpreted not just one but two Machines: HMX, first launched in 2015 for MB&F’s 10th Anniversary, and Starfleet Machine, MB&F’s first table clock, created with L’Epée 1839.
Black Badger's specialty is working with high-efficiency lume – an exclusive material that comes in solid blocks which he mills by hand or machine into the desired shape. The lume is extremely efficient at storing and releasing light, and its solid form means that it shines brighter for longer. The three available colours – Radar Green, Phantom Blue, and Purple Reign – are eye-catching by day, but it's when the sun goes down that they really come out to party.
LM1 XIA HANG
Welcome to the world of LM1 Xia Hang, a collaboration between MB&F and a Chinese artist featured at the M.A.D.Gallery: Xia Hang.
LM1 Xia Hang retains all of the 19th century pocket watch-inspired features of the original LM1, including the majestically suspended oscillating balance wheel and dual time indications that can be set completely independently, but with a twist: the power reserve is indicated by a miniature, highly-polished aluminium man, designed by talented Chinese sculptor, Xia Hang. The man sits up straight when the movement is fully wound (Mr. Up) and gradually slumps over as the power diminishes (Mr. Down). Xia Hang first created full-size sculptures, which MB&F then scaled down to a height of just 4mm (1/8") and then developed the articulation required.
MoonMachine by Finnish watchmaker Stepan Sarpaneva is the first of the MB&F Performance Art pieces reinterpreted by a watchmaker – and the first to endow a Horological Machine with a new complication.
To create MoonMachine, Stepan reconfigured the HM3 Frog by turning it 90° and adding his iconic moon-face/moon-phase indicator. He also transformed the winding rotor into a scintillating firmament of laser-pierced northern stars, forming constellations visible in the northern sky.
HM4 ONLY WATCH
For the 2011 Only Watch charity auction, under the patronage of HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, MB&F created an emotionally charged piece in collaboration with Chinese artist, Huang Hankang.
Based on the radical Horological Machine No.4, the HM4 Only Watch features a miniature flying panda bear piloting the machine: a magical synthesis of the fantasy of children’s dreams and cutting-edge haute horlogerie.
What could possibly bring together the 152-year-old House of Boucheron, that most venerable of France’s high-jewellery Houses, and MB&F, the cutting-edge Swiss creative laboratory whose Horological Machines first invaded our planet only a few years ago?
The answer is the JwlryMachine, an astonishing haute-joaillerie version of MB&F’s Horological Machine No.3.
The visual illusion of the owl’s heart beating typifies the hint of secretiveness that Boucheron’s artisans instil into some of their best-loved jewels; as does the fact that the uninitiated will need to search for the time indications on the sides of the cones among the owl’s sparkling plumage. The extreme refinement that radiates from the proportions, the choice of stones and the quality of craftsmanship makes this creation “very Boucheron”.
HM2.2 BLACK BOX
Alain Silberstein springs a surprise with his case for Horological Machine No.2
It takes a lot to surprise followers of MB&F, but the HM2.2, with a case created by French watch designer Alain Silberstein, may well do it. Alain Silberstein is widely known for his bold use of colour and pattern – and one might have expected the adventurous MB&F to push that tendency to the limit. But no, the two came up with what they affectionately called the “black box”, all Bauhaus purity and restraint. It is crafted like a jewel, but Silberstein says that it reminds him of the miniature box cameras of the 1940s.
In terms of design, the Silberstein case retains the twin porthole dials and powerful profile of the original Horological Machine No.2 with its flying-buttress lugs. But otherwise, it has been entirely rethought and rebuilt. The science-fiction shock of the original has given way to something lighter and more whimsical, with a personality all its own.
HM2 ONLY WATCH
MB&F and artist Sage Vaughn made a strong statement at the 2009 Only Watch charity auction.
There is a butterfly trapped in the movement of the latest watch to emerge from MB&F. And it has no hope of escaping, because the complicated movement is wrapped in barbed wire. This emotionally charged piece, a one-of-a-kind interpretation of MB&F’s Horological Machine No.2, is signed by the American artist Sage Vaughn.
After a first meeting with Max Büsser, Sage Vaughn understood the mission at once and immediately proposed to donate his time and talent. The entire upper face of the watch is crafted in sapphire crystal, revealing the HM2’s complex engine. The hundreds of minute components are imprisoned in barbed wire and the blue butterfly struggles to escape from the same fate. The scene has all the emotional power of the first rough by Sage Vaughn – a pencil sketch of the movement criss-crossed by barbed wire drawn in red pencil.