On May 27, 2020, independent watchmaker Ressence and Sotheby’s launched a competition to design a unique watch, offering watch lovers the opportunity to create their own interpretation of one of Ressence’s latest models, the Type 1 Slim. In the past few weeks, 466 people, from children and professional designers to watchmakers such as Alain Silberstein, enthusiastically entered the competition and submitted their #WatchAgainstCovid19 designs.
A winner has now been chosen by the Instagram watch community among four finalists selected by Ressence founder Benoît Mintiens. The winning design—a pastel blue watch signed by English father-of-two Raymond Ramsden—is now being produced by Ressence’s manufacture in Switzerland, before it goes to auction in Sotheby’s Hong Kong Important Watches sale on July 11. Proceeds from the sale will support the Covid-19 Research Programme being run by KU Leuven University in Belgium.
Ressence Founder and CEO Benoît Mintiens said, “Letting our community have the final say and be part of our project felt like the right thing to do. During the selection process, we discussed the feasibility of the designs with our Swiss manufacturers. We also wanted to create a genuine one-off, so we opted for entries that were far from our own artistic direction. And most importantly, we chose optimistic approaches which would bring a message of hope in the current difficult times.”
Fifty-eight-year old Raymond Ramsden lives in Yorkshire, England, and submitted his design on the April 29.
Minor changes have been made to Raymond’s design, following Ressence’s discussion with its suppliers. The original drawing and renderings made by Martin Miškolci, the artist commissioned by Ressence, can be seen in the image above.
Proceeds of the sale will go to the Covid-19 Research Programme of the KU Leuven and UZ Leuven universities. The aim of the program is to research a vaccine, advanced detection, and new molecular treatments against the virus. For more information on donations, please click here.