You know it as the watchmaker with an esoteric vein. Forty years ago, Rado was the first to explore the use of ceramics in watches, priding itself on making ergonomic timepieces with unorthodox design. That extra feather in the cap aside, the Swiss brand is still best known for one thing — its True Square Open Heart being the only square-cased watch on the market with a skeletonised movement.
Now, adding to the revered clutch of True Square ceramic watches are four more designs, crafted by renowned studios: Italian duo Formafantasma, British designer Tej Chauhan, Japanese studio YOY and Indian duo Thukral & Tagra. Their design inspiration will be explored and discussed at length during the virtual Rado Design Week, which ends on Dec 4.
The Rado Design Week has always marked a pivotal moment for the watchmaker, which started out in a workshop in Lengnau back in 1917. This year, it has partnered architecture and design magazine Dezeen for a five-day online showcase that includes talks, lectures, movies and product launches — all in the hopes of reaching a wider audience especially at a time when it’s impossible to attend physical events due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Just yesterday, YOY studio founders Naoki Ono and Yuki Yamamoto spoke to Dezeen editor-in-chief Marcus Fairs about their creation in the first part of the Rado Design Week. Called Undigital, the timepiece combines features of analogue and digital, which results in a minimal black watch contrasted by a set of bright white dials influenced by the classic seven-segment displays of digital watches.
"As everything in the world, including watches, becomes digital, we wanted to explore the curious opposite: transforming a digital thing into an analogue one," the designers explained in the video unveiling the watch.
Apart from the watch launches, the week will conclude with an exclusive competition, offering Dezeen readers a chance to win a Rado watch of their choice from the collection.
More interviews will be broadcast live on Dezeen throughout the week. Check out the schedule below:
Monday 30 November
10:00am – video about the Rado True Square Digital watch by YOY
12:00pm – live talk with YOY and Rado CEO Adrian Bosshard
Tuesday 1 December
10:00am – video about the Rado True Square Formafantasma watch by Formafantasma
4:00pm – live talk with Formafantasma and Rado CEO Adrian Bosshard
Wednesday 2 December
10:00am – video about the Rado True Square Tej Chauhan watch by Tej Chauhan
4:00pm – live talk with Tej Chauhan and Rado CEO Adrian Bosshard
Thursday 3 December
10:00am – video about Thukral & Tagra's True Square Over the Abyss watch for Rado
1:00pm – live talk with Thukral & Tagra and Rado CEO Adrian Bosshard
Friday 4 December
10:00am – competition to win Rado True Square watch
All times are UK times (GMT).
See here for more.