This exclusive interview with Swiss master watchmaker Thomas Prescher, founder of Thomas Prescher Haute Horlogerie was conducted by Nicola Linza and Cristoffer Neljesjö in Twann, Switzerland October 2010
Describe Thomas Prescher Haute Horlogerie
Thomas Prescher Haute Horlogerie is specialized on custom made high end watches. Nearly all of our watches are entirely made to the wishes of our clients. So in the last eight years we haven’t done the same watch two times. We are well known for our multiple axis tourbillions and we are the only company producing a flying Triple Axis Tourbillon world wide.
What made you interested in pursuing a career in custom watchmaking?
During my carrier I do a lot of restoring work. While doing that I saw many interesting unusual mechanisms. These mechanisms and additional other influences made me to develop the concept of my first hand made watch. When I try to sell this watch a potential client said to me I will buy it if you can change that and this for me. This behavior became very common to me and today we have a lot of clients who give me their wishes direct during the concept phase of a watch.
On average how long does it take to complete a custom watch design?
The needed time is quite dependant on the wishes of the client and of the complexity of the mechanism. It is also dependant how quick the communication and the decisions are done.
The time deference between one month and a year. The average time is about three month.
Who primarily is your clientele?
There is no special group, profession or something else my clients have in common, but all of them appreciate nice things and art. In general they went through several steps of collecting brands and found out that there is something beyond this.
What is your source of inspiration for new watch designs?
If I only knew. I found out that I am quite open to my entire environment and that it could be nearly everything if it happens in the right moment that makes me to think about if it could be an idea for a watch mechanism. E.g. the horizontal oscillating weight for my Mysterious Automatic Double Axis Tourbillon was inspired by a big swing in an amusement park. When I saw the people entering the swing and moving on its surface I thought why not integrating a mechanism in this oscillating weight. It ended up in the first calendar integrated in an oscillating weight ever made.
What makes your watches unique?
Each watch is realized due to a vision and for sure the wishes of a client. We do not make any series. So we don’t need to produce in an industrial way. It is also my love for perfection and aesthetics. I love it to try out new things, treatments, materials so craftsmanship becomes art. Perhaps the expression that the watch is for me what is the linen for the painting artist.
The above interview with Thomas Prescher 2010 © Manner of Man Magazine/Welldressed. All rights reserved. Reproduction is strictly prohibited without written permission from the publisher. -