Tokujin Yoshioka about “V”
The concept was a bandless design
that makes the most of light reflection.
January 18, 2019
“V”, a watch that integrates a case and bracelet with randomly constructed V cuts. How did Tokujin Yoshioka come up with an idea of making cuts on the bracelet to create various expressions made by light reflections?
In the early nineteenth century, which was the heyday of a pocket watch, there were ladies’ accessory watches that combine small movements and pendants, brooches, and bracelets. People used and enjoyed them as an “intellectual accessory” that integrates a watch, a device developed based on the gathered wisdom, with a beautiful exterior rather than a tool to know the time. The watches of the day have been increasingly considered in the same light. Because a smartphone is good enough to check the time in these days, a watch is expected to play another role as an accessory, not a mere time-checking device. That is why a watch can be more free.
“V” is a rare watch since it was created from its bracelet design. The designer Tokujin Yoshioka says, “I was longing for creating a watch with various expressions made by its uneven, random bracelet surface that plays a key role. For example, I had an image in my mind of making a bracelet by extrusion molding and cutting it intermittently, like Japanese traditional cylindrical candy made so that the pattern appears wherever it is sliced. I also contrived ways to add a sense of ISSEY MIYAKE brand’s PLEATS PLEASE.”
The V cuts randomly constructed on the metal bracelet reflect light diffusely. At the planning stage, there was an idea of making the links that shape horizontal stripes or triangles, but after testing various kinds of combination, Tokujin Yoshioka decided to use three kinds of links with patterned, indented surfaces. The links are made of stainless steel, but its inorganic characteristic just like an aluminum sash makes possible the gentle shine. This is how the bracelet was created, and the bracelet is definitely the primary feature of “V” that has a timepiece incorporated into a part of the bracelet. That is to say, “V” is the same intellectual accessory watch as those developed in the early nineteenth century. We can possibly say that this is a very watch-like design in this smartphone era—the watch design free from being restricted to only a practical product.
Established Tokujin Yoshioka Inc. in 2000. Active in the fields of design, contemporary art and architecture, with works transcending human senses and themed in nature, he is highly acclaimed globally. He has won many international design awards with many of his works chosen as part of permanent collections in museums worldwide, including Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Le Centre national d’art et de culture Georges-Pompidou (Centre Pompidou) in Paris, and Victoria and Albert Museum in London. He was chosen by Newsweek magazine as one of the 100 Most Respected Japanese in the World.