For the second installment of “A Watch to Watch,” I turned my attention overseas. Over the past fifty years, American audiences have been captivated by Swiss craftsmanship but few know about the great legacy of watchmaking in Germany. German watchmaking is characterized by functional simplicity. Today, we will look at a collection of watches from Junghans. Junghans is a relatively small German brand founded by Erhard Junghans in 1861. For over 150 years, Junghans has specialized in crafting timepieces with the finest attention to detail and design.
Currently Junghans, has four collections -- Erhard Junghans, Junghans Meister, Technology, and the Max Bill by Junghans. Out of the four collections, the Max Bill collection claims the biggest stake in the entry-level market. The rare combination of Bauhaus design and expert craftsmanship are intrinsic to these timepieces.
Inspired by the late ecstatic designer-- Max Bill, the collection echoes simplicity and refinement. With nearly thirty different offerings, the Max Bill Collection has a watch for every palette. From the typography used on the dial of the watch to the in-house movements made by Junghans, all elements of this collection exude quality. After further inspection, I was most drawn to the Max Bill Chronoscope model (above) which retails for $1980 USD. Junghans hit gold with the Chronoscope model. In layman's terms, “chronoscope” refers to the chronograph function with a more precise unit of measurement. Coming in at just 40mm and propelled by the in-house J880.2 movement, this watch could easily go for over $4k USD. Everything about this watch catches the eye. The extreme attention to detail driven by utility and value is unparalleled at this price point. For those who are interested in more information, please take a look at the Junghans website - http://www.junghans.de/en/junghans-collection/watches/maxbill/detail.html
In fairness, German watch design has always caught my attention. Naturally, I am drawn to timepieces that do not sacrifice design and quality for commercial consumption. Junghans is doing something very unique here and it is time for American audiences to take notice. The Max Bill Collection offers unsurpassed value without compromise. Undoubtedly, the Chronoscope model is the flagship of their lineup. I encourage everyone to take a deeper look at German watchmaking and more specifically, Junghans. Although the price point is a little higher than American competitors, the value is unmatched and these watches are conversation pieces. Time will tell whether or not Junghans will gain a foothold in North American markets. Until then, be one of the lucky few to get your hands on the Max Bill Collection by Junghans. German watchmaking at its’ finest.
To learn more about about Max Bill, the artist, visit Artsy's Max Bill page.