Bell & Ross have shaken up the BR05 without the use of precious gemstones or materials, and all they had to do was add some texture. The BR05 Artline is brilliant and that’s in large part to its Art Deco inspired design.
Co-founder of Bell & Ross, Bruno Belamich, said that the name Artline “indicates that it incorporates an artistic dimension (art) in its design (line). When you look at it, you immediately think of the American style of the Stream-Line.”
Assuming that this is the Streamline Locomotive he’s referencing, you can see the similarities, even making the edges of the square bezel rounded. Granted, this was present on previous BR05’s but they have really played to original design’s strengths and added something new.
Belamich said that the team wanted to “launch a watch that was dressed, decorated.” To do that, they used gadroon (relief engraving) which you can find on the bezel and on the centre links on the bracelet. It’s this effect that produces the stunning Art Deco look.
Part of this is also inspired by the military, as in the1940s, the first transport planes had corrugated aluminium fuselages.
The dial is a sunburst ruthenium grey which is a completely new shade for the BR05 and looks very classy. You’ve also got a date window at 3 o’clock and an in-house self-winding BR-CAL 321 calibre which you can see from the sapphire caseback.
The Artline looks amazing. It’s retro, it’s sporty, it would go great with a suit. What’s not to like? Texture on a watch feels somewhat underrated and it provides unique looks that are often more creative or simply better looking than just adding diamonds or whatever all over the bezel. There is a market for people who like iced out watches, but it’s never seemed interesting or particularly impressive. Sure, there are exceptions, like the AP Rainbow Royal Oaks, but even those don’t look particularly good, they’re just very well made. The Artline does a lot, with a little, and that is more impressive as it requires more creativity to pull off. Picking and choosing carefully where to put features, where to show restraint, a little touch here, a little touch there.
It’s limited to just 250 pieces, priced at $8,000 AUD, and is available exclusively at Bell & Ross boutiques.
At A Glance
Case: 40 mm in width. 10.50 mm thick. Satin-finished and polished steel with striated bezel. Screw-down crown. Crown guard. Sapphire case-back with 360° oscillating weight.
Movement: BR-CAL.321. Automatic mechanical.
Crystal: Sapphire with anti-reflective coating.
Strap: Satin-finished and polished steel with striated links.
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds and date.
Dial: Anthracite grey sunray. Applique indices filled with Super- LumiNova®. Skeletonised Super-LumiNova®-filled hour and minute hands.
Water Resistance: 100m
Buckle: Folding. Satin-finished and polished steel.
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