As Jaeger-LeCoultre continues to celebrate the 90th anniversary of their landmark Reverso watch, the brand is turning to the art world for inspiration. Specifically, the Maison has decided to pay tribute to 19th-century Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai with a very special edition Reverso.
The JLC Reverso Tribute Enamel Hokusai recreates one of the ukiyo-e painter’s most beautiful woodblock prints, the Kirifuri Waterfall, on the reverse side of the watch’s trademark rotating case. Each miniature painting was completed by hand in Grand Feu enamel in a complex and intricate process that took JLC’s Master Enameller more than 70 hours to complete. Despite the caseback being roughly a tenth the size of Hokusai’s original work, JLC took great strides to match every detail and color exactly. The dial of the watch is no slouch, either. It boasts a guilloché wave pattern that was completed by a master guillocheur on a century-old machine in a process that takes over five hours. Applied over the guilloché is a layer of green translucent enamel — an eight-hour task — and countless hours were spent perfectly matching the dial enamel’s color to the painting on the back of the watch. Unsurprisingly, JLC is making just ten examples of this very special and time-consuming Reverso.