A. Lange & Söhne’s Datograph Up/Down “Lumen” not only measures time but also is an object with a visual presence and unlimited facets depending on the surrounding light. Its launch at Solo House Office in Cretas, Spain, was accompanied by an interesting discussion between architectural and design experts about the links between timepieces, architecture, design and light. The fourth model in the “Lumen” series, initially launched in 2010 reveals a new aesthetic dimension as soon as darkness sets in: a distinctive green hue that is particularly pleasant to the human eye.
All indications, from the time and date to the chronograph function, glow in the dark. A special coating on the semi-transparent sapphire-crystal dial filters out most of the visible light but not that part of the UV spectrum which is needed to charge the luminous pigments with light energy. The darker the surroundings, the more clearly the display contrasts against the dark background. The chronograph – with a flyback function, a precisely jumping minute counter and a power-reserve indicator – comes in a limited edition of 200 watches.
To emphasise the special features of the new timepiece, Dutch designer Sabine Marcelis created a pyramid-shaped, light-sensitive pointer that can be used to calculate the time of day. Located in the middle of Solo Office’s garden, the structure contains endless nuances and colours which are influenced by light and the environment and is also modified by them.
Marcelis’ work is characterised by pure forms which highlight material properties. Marcelis applies a strong aesthetic quality to her collaborations with industry specialists. This method of working allows her to intervene in the manufacturing process, using material research and experimentation to achieve new and surprising visual effects for projects both showcased in galleries and commissioned by commercial clients. She considers her designs to be true sensorial experiences and not simple static works.