Very rarely is humanity blessed with true trailblazers, but when they do come along, greatness always ensues. In this case, we’re referring to a once-in-a-generation talent who took the watchmaking world by storm: Gérald Genta. The Swiss designer was a cosmic design force who designed a slew of iconic watches, most notably, the Royal Oak sports watch for Audemars Piguet. Now, on the 10th year anniversary of his death and the 50th year anniversary of his legendary Royal Oak watch, Sotheby’s is unleashing a massive auction of the late designer’s work, including the original Royal Oak that Genta personally wore.
Dubbed “Gérald Genta: Icon of Time” Sotheby’s auction aptly captures the influence of Genta’s work in watchmaking. While there is an extensive list of incredible items for sale, none are making collectors foam at the mouth more than the original Royal Oak that Gérald Genta personally wore. Aside from being the watch that launched Audemars Piguet into the stratosphere, the Royal Oak design was one of the first luxury watches to feature a stainless steel construction. The Royal Oak is arguably the most iconic watch of the modern era, which makes it valuable as is, but the fact that the original Royal Oak that Genta wore himself is for sale makes this auction one of the most-anticipated watch auctions in recent history. Moreover, the auction includes one hundred original drawings of his most famous timepieces, a few never-before-seen private commissions, and a selection of avant-garde watch designs.
This auction will give collectors and art appreciators alike the chance to buy one of the most famous timepieces in the history of watchmaking. Seldom do creatives as influential, talented, and innovative as Gérald Genta come along, so the fact that Sotheby’s is selling these amazing drawings and Genta’s personal Royal Oak is something to be celebrated in itself. The “Gérald Genta: Icon of Time” auction begins on February 10, 2022 at Sotheby’s.