Graffiti and street artist, Alec Monopoly, is no stranger to the world of watchmaking having worked with TAG Heuer in the past, but now he reveals what he’s been working on with Jacob & Co.
Jacob & Co. are famous for their 3D Astronomia watches. They’re fun and quirky watches combined with the crème de la crème of haute horology. It’s no small wonder that Alec Monopoly chose this watch to play with.
The Astronomia Alec Monopoly has a four-arm vertical movement and complications but what makes it fun is the inclusion of Monopoly’s characters as little statuettes made from gold. These tiny characters often appear in Monopoly’s work, and they include the Monopoly Man, Scrooge McDuck, Money Wings, and a dollar sign with diamonds and bills painted on it.
The colours on the watch are bright and in your face. The hands on the dial are painted a bright lime green, Alec Monopoly’s signature colour, but that isn’t all, you’ll find splashes of hot pink and red throughout the dial. It’s all very cartoony and garish but that is precisely the point. That contrast between high and low art makes this watch something special.
The characters were first drawn by Monopoly and then rendered in CAD so that they knew what dimensions they were working with. Once established each statuette is then hand sculpted and cast in gold. Finally, they are then hand finished and hand painted by Monopoly. No wonder Monopoly thought this was difficult.
Monopoly said of the work,
“This is by far the smallest scale ‘canvas’ I’ve ever painted. Every element, every brushstroke and colour choice needed to be carefully thought out and perfectly executed. My street murals are often free flowing and wild but given the intricacies and meticulous mechanics within these watches, I needed to approach the creative process with much more precision and patience.”
It seems his efforts have been rewarded with a fantastic piece of work that deserves acclaim. He is a perfect fit for Jacob & Co. as founder Jacob Arabo says of Monopoly,
“Alec is a young artist that started his career taking risks and not thinking twice about it. He acted as if he had nothing to lose and he continued to persist until he broke through to become world famous for his creativity and unique angle. I started out the same way by doing something different and unique and I persisted until I was able to break through.”
The case is 18k rose gold and the dial is encased in sapphire which allows you to see the movement and characters very easily. The backdrop is a starry night that allows the colourful characters to really jump out from the dial and come to life.
This watch might not be what you expect from a $600,000 USD watch but that’s the best part about it. It really stands out as many Jacob & Co. watches tend to. It’s outrageous but who really wants it any other way? Only nine of these watches will be produced.