Bvlgari Product Creation Executive Director Fabrizio Buonamassa describes how a last-minute meeting with Tadao Ando brought about a new expression of the Octo Finissimo series with dials designed by the famed Japanese architect
Architect Tadao Ando creates a limited-edition Octo Finissimo for Bvlgari.
A crescent moon elegantly symbolizes the transitory nature of time. Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Tadao Ando, 160-piece limited edition, bvlgari.com
"It was honestly one of the most exciting experiences of my career when I visited Tadao Ando in his studio. If I remember well, it was in Osaka. It was a tiny studio, as you can imagine, in an office building in Japan on the fourth floor. It was full of books and sketches and maquettes and was very, very impressive. We started to discuss Japanese aesthetics, concrete, architectural elements. And we arrived at some proposals for the Finissimo, but he began to sketch fast and replied just as quickly, ‘OK, you know that I have an idea. I would love to have a black hole on the dial.’
Designed by Tadao Ando, the Hyogo Prefectural Museum of Art, a multipurpose art gallery located in Nada-ku, Kobe, Japan
This concept could be very interesting for our watch masters to make the black hole on the dials only 0.3 millimeters thick. And I said, ‘OK, Tadao, I leave you to do your job.’ And he arrived with the idea of this watch. It was his creative brilliance. We removed the logo, the 6, the 12, the indexes, everything from the dial, giving Tadao all the space he needs. But if you look closely, the center of the black hole is not at the center of this small second hand. It was a precise request at the beginning. OK, I thought, perhaps he made a mistake and tried to put the center of the small circle under the center of the second hand.
The watch is made of sandblasted black ceramic with a blue lacquered dial and a yellow gold crescent moon representing the first stage of the lunar cycle
But it was no, no, no, no. The imprecision was a specific request. And I now find this second edition, the second dial, even more beautiful. It allows possibilities, because as you can see, after the black hole, we start to have the rising moon. So it means that, in the black hole, nobody knows what happens. We don't have time, and we don't have light. It's nothing. So here we have a moon that starts to come out from the darkness. It's very interesting for Bvlgari. I find the dial beautiful in terms of aesthetics, very Japanese. This version of the Octo is black ceramic with a dark blue dial with this slice of moon. It is absolutely amazing."