Who's Who , Christophe Claret


Both arrived in watchmaking at about the same time, both tend to take the roads less travelled, both take care to cultivate their distinctiveness – and yet they had never worked together. It has taken Christophe Claret and Laurent Picciotto, unrepentant outsiders in the new wave of watchmaking, twenty years to find each other. 

I'd already noticed his creations when he was still working for other brands, all powered by Claret movements,” recalls Laurent Picciotto. “His name would keep cropping up – and always in conjunction with top-level grandes complications.” Gradually, the Claret name established itself and high-flying watches arrived in quick succession, until the Claret name finally became a brand in its own right. 

The two brands now complement one another perfectly. Chronopassion is just the right match for the watchmaker, whose creations are as extravagant as he himself is discreet, providing its unrivalled experience in unconventional watches and worldwide renown. The arrival of Christophe Claret at rue Saint-Honoré marks the logical outcome for two independents; champions whose paths meet at the summit. “Claret is so outstanding that collaboration was inevitable,” explains Laurent Picciotto. 

From the first sapphire bridges by Claret (“twenty years ahead of their time,” notes Picciotto) to the recent X-Trem-1 and Margot, the master watchmaker from Le Locle has woven a path that successfully combines fun with technical skill and creativity to produce pure poetry. “For me, the Margot is a best-seller: a watch which makes you want to play and that’s also redolent with emotion,” explains Laurent Picciotto. “When you place it on the table, it generates the same reaction as the X-Trem-1: a ‘wow’ effect; the thrill of discovering an outstanding object, so perfected that it’s irresistible.”

Little wonder, then, that Claret’s place at Chronopassion is so natural. It’s that of a coherent brand which has reached full maturity. The watchmaker’s creations can’t even really be termed “complicated” any more; they go much further than that. They explore unknown territory, pushing back the technical and creative boundaries of watchmaking – as do all those selected by Chronopassion. 

Journalist : Olivier Mûller 06/2015