giuliano mazzuoli - Manometro
giuliano mazzuoli - Manometro


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Mazzuoli is, above all, a creator. He is an Italian Designer, born in 1947 who adores beautiful objects and cars. He lives and works in the hills above Florence, from where he originated. While Director of the family printing business Mazzuoli becomes engaged in the creation of pen models which are highly appreciated.
A true creator. He had no watchmaking training and although he is attracted to watches, he knew nothing about their mechanics. His approach is entirely conditioned by his taste for design and the aesthetics. He noticed a Manometer at his doctor’s house. He then had the idea of creating a watch in the form an instrument for measuring pressure, while retaining its usual features: immediate, accurate reading and above all, sobriety. “I was really inspired by its simplicity. However, there is nothing more difficult than designing simplicity.” He explains. In his hands the watch is not considered as the result of complex technicalities that fascinate watch enthusiasts but as a simple, practical, elegant mechanical object. He gives it unique and recognizable ergonomics, a radical identity, innocence and freshness that have convinced everyone from professionals to all types of watch enthusiasts. His intentions are far from suddenly imposing in the area of watchmaking but he wishes to offer a stylish and beautiful object which charms a wide range of customers. “It is a very nice
design, look out for those who are not watchmakers, it is a clean and simple looking extraordinary piece. In short, in the first sense of the word it is a curiousity that shows a lot of care has been taken “, Laurent Picciotto tells us.

Technical specifications

  • Satin steel and polished
  • 45.2 mm. in diameter
  • 14.8 mm. thick.
  • Crown at 2 O’clock for left handed
  • crown at 10 O’clock for  right handed.
  • Anti-reflective sapphire crystal.
  • Black, white, dark blue or ivory gold.
  • Black Arabic numerals with 12 in red.
  • ETA 2824/2 (Swiss made) automatic.
  • Hand sewn calf with saddle stitching.

Who's who

Nothing predestined Giuliano Mazzuoli to make watches. And nothing forced Laurent Picciotto to take them, still less to become their official retailer. But in the parallel universe of watchmaking, that means they were made for one another. That’s how impulses work: they are unreasonable, unpredictable and inevitable. The spark occurred in 2004. Giuliano Mazzuoli had designed and produced the first prototypes of the Manometro, a 45 mm timepiece almost 15 mm thick.
It reproduces the shape and spirit of the manometer it is based on: easy-to-read Hours, Minutes and Seconds, a cream-coloured background, a steel case and a crown at 2 o’clock or 10 o’clock – depending on whether it’s a right or left-handed model. “This may be a detail, but it’s one of the things that drew me to it,” emphasises Laurent Picciotto. Details like this embody the fact that everything in a Giuliano Mazzuoli is thought through and styled to make its owner believe that it is amazingly simple – despite each detail being the result of extremely minute design work. Design is probably how Giuliano Mazzuoli managed to escape his father’s printing works.
This booming business on a hillside in his native Tuscany was a daily chore for the young Giuliano, but a burden he had to bear to provide for his family. “In fact, I hated studying. My father had found me a place in a haberdasher’s belonging to one of his friends, telling him to make my life as hard as possible,” recalls Giuliano Mazzuoli. “I still didn’t know what I wanted to do when I grew up, but when my father died suddenly I had no other choice than to take over the printing works, whether I liked it or not.” It was there, however, that Giuliano Mazzuoli’s brushstrokes began to assert themselves. He began to customise various items such as typefaces, bindings and diaries. His two sons came to work with him, giving him more creative distance. He designed two lines of pens. One day, when his doctor was taking his blood pressure, he was intrigued by the design of the old manometer.
“I was really drawn by its simplicity – and the most difficult thing to design is simplicity,” he explains today. Giuliano Mazzuoli undertook to transform the simple, functional design of this manometer into a watch using an ETA base. The Manometro was born. Laurent Picciotto was one of the first to discover it, and the piece really caught his attention. “It’s a very attractive design, the watchmaking work of someone who isn’t a watchmaker. It’s a simple, minimalist approach that has resulted in an extraordinary timepiece. Basically it’s a curiosity for us, in the literal sense of the word, and a great deal of care has gone into it.” A second timepiece, the Contagiri, appeared a few years later. The design is by Giuliano Mazzuoli, the movement by Giulio Papi. This more mature piece is a real watchmaking masterwork. As such it contrasts with the singularity of the Manometro – still the most original creation of an equally singular individual.
Journalist ; Olivier Müller
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