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Art Deco Design from Singapore

Vario in Singapore has designed what they call their Empire Art Deco Mechanical Watch. They say they got their inspiration from New York’s Empire State building which is late Deco. They put an etching of the building on the back which seems superfluous but whatever. All is forgiven with their font. Check out that crazy eight!

This is an amazing modern take on an old art movement. If I wanted a Deco watch I’m sure I would buy one from the period. This watch, though, would be far more dependable than used, scratch resistant, and keep better time than any old time piece from a hundred years ago. Fascinating.

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Merry Christmas from Myself and the Great Sergio Bompard

Welcome to an Art Deco Christmas! May your gifts be friends and family. Or at least the memories of them.

I pushed this image in post using Photoshop 2020. I have too much aquamarine in the sky and the brown in her handbags and stole are poorly represented. Needs some selective color replacement. The original file is below, possibly an aging postcard. I doubt Bompard painted snow the color of old manilla folders. Art Deco colors to me are bight, vibrant, jewel like. I would love to see the original.

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Modern Art Deco?

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Modern Art Deco?

In my last post I looked at some watches ascribed to modern Bauhaus design. (internal link) Which got me to thinking. Are there any watches inspired by Art Deco? A few seem possible.

This is another NOMOS, the same company producing a Bauhaus design that we saw in my last post. This didn’t seem like Deco to me at first but the more I look at it, the more it seems. This is the NOMOS Glashütte Lambda Weißgold. An enthusiastic reviewer says, “This is most probably my favourite watch of the minimalist series, albeit the most expensive. NOMOS are renowned and well recognised as a brand that does things a bit different, but still produce pieces that are well designed movement wise. The Lambda Weißgold takes inspiration from modern art-deco, and combines that with minimalist chic. CHF14,800


Panerai. This lands solidly in the Deco camp. “The dial of a pendulum clock displayed on the first floor of Panerai’s Florentine shop on the Piazza San Giovanni is re-created in two distinct dial versions, both in 47-mm cases made of polished stainless steel – ivory (Ref. PAM00791) and black (PAM00790). Both retro-look dials are notable for their large, Art Deco hour numerals; peripheral railway minute track and additional interior ring; and lacquered, spear-shaped hour and minute hands, a style used for the first time on a Panerai wristwatch. Price for both models: $9,200.”

A Bradley. This hits the mark, employing a sculptural element that good Art Deco pieces had. Note the ball that marks the time. I think this is very well done. “Modern design meets timeless character in the Bradley Classic. We pair the iconic, minimalist face of the Bradley timepiece with a tried-and-true Italian leather band.” $285

I lost the name and information for this modern watch. The radiating sun has a nice deco-like feel.

For future discussion. This is the Capitol Bank of Commerce Center in downtown Sacramento, California. I used to work around the building. Back in the 1980s there was a movement called The New Ornamentalism of which this was part. It always struck me as deco influenced. I don’t know what happened to the New Ornamentalism but I will do some reading.

Update: I have read up on New Ornamentalism. Click here to go there. (internal link)

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A Book Without Words: Art Deco Borders by Ted Menten

I’ve always loved the Dover Clip-Art Series Books. You can still find them at your local used book store or at on-line book stores like (external link).

I bought three today: Advertising Art in The Art Deco Style, Art Deco Borders, both by Theodore Menten, and Art Nouveau Animal Designs and Patterns by M.P. Verneuil.

If you love clip art, line art, black and white illustrations, stenciling, or are just interested in Deco and Nouveau, order a few of these Dover Books. You’ll be very happy.