Friends, Romans, countrymen! Lend me your ear! New watch alert! The Van Gogh-inspired plastic fantastic quartz-powered timepiece sets itself apart from Swatch’s strange descent into roll-your-own watches, where you drag an image around to create a bespoke version of an underlying design. The cool thing: this MOMA collab honoring Vinnie’s Starry Night isn’t an obvious homage. It’s a work of art in its own right . . .
Notice the way the dial design continues onto the case and band. The thick and lustrous “brush strokes” swirling across the face. To use art history terminology, that’s some cool sh*t.
The MOMA Swatch marks a return to the Swiss brand’s artsy fartsy collector roots. Unlike the recent Keith Haring Mickey Mouse mishegoss, Swatch’s MOMA series evokes the artists’ works without billboarding them. They’re an “in the know” fashion statement that can be appreciated by those who aren’t. The watches are also legible, practical and cheap. Right answer.
New watch alert readers know that German retailer Bucherer makes a habit of commissioning blue dial versions of mainstream watches. The question here: why in the world would Tudor not sell its own blue dial Black Bay Bronze (aside from the word “black” in the model name)?
The sub-Rolex brand’s standard-issue slate gray dial Black Bay Bronze isn’t a patch on this version: a stunning timepiece suitable for work, rest or play. The kicker: buyers can acquire a BLUE for the same price as the 44mm gray watch. Otherwise . . .
The Bucherer Black Bay Bronze Bucherer BLUE is identical to its dour donor, complete with Tudor’s COSC Caliber MT5601 in-house automatic movement (developed with Breitling), anodized aluminum unidirectional bezel, a patina-in-the-making case, 200m water resistance, a five-year no-maintenance-required warranty and a dial that’s so easy to read it’s practically telepathic.
According to its originator, the Tudor Black Bay Bronze Bucherer BLUE is “a symbol of luxury in its most relaxed state.” I reckon that honor belongs to a mega yacht, but I’m calling it: new watch alert winner number two.
DOXA SUB 300 Carbon – $4k
Watch enthusiasts greeted the return of the 1967 DOXA SUB 300 with open hearts and open wallets. The Truth About Watches was a little more circumspect, concluding that the $2490 DOXA SUB 300 Searambler is “Not a practical dive watch and plenty pricey, but if you like the design, you’ll love the watch.”
The even more financially challenging Carbon model fixes the practicality issue with 300m of water resistance (up from 100m). The new improved version is a COSC Certified Chronometer, promising -4 to +6 seconds per day accuracy. As for the pressure-resistant titanium (not carbon fiber) case . . .
At 42.5mm, the cushion-shaped container makes the dial look less dinky than it does nestling in the steel cased SUB 300 Searambler. The real hero: the Carbon’s FKM faux rubber strap. “It is the softest, most pliable and comfortable rubber strap I’ve ever owned,” commentator Rice and Gravy asserts at watchuseek.com.
More than that, the Crayola strap is like the Dude’s rug in The Big Lebowski: it ties the horological room together. Though sure to offend traditionalists, the optimistically priced DOXA SUB 300 Carbon is a better watch and, IMHO, better looking than any of its predecessors. And you thought I was a hater.