Anyone looking for a well-designed mechanical watch with an equally nice price-tag should head down to Uniform Wares' temporary shop in London's Shoreditch next week.
The watch brand, part of an intriguing new wave of British watchmakers, has created an exhibition there to run during London Design Festival. The show, called 12:24, will include commissioned works by Anthony Burrill, Ed Ward and Erica Dorn.
'We wanted a way to showcase our passion for contemporary art and design but in a way that was relevant to our watch brand,' says brand co-founder Patrick Bek. And so they enlisted a group of their favourite graphic artists and illustrators and asked them to create a print inspired by a 'pivotal moment' in time.
It's only three years since London-based product designers Oliver Fowles and Patrick Bek set up Uniform Wares, which is now creating mechanical and quartz-driven watch designs. The pair first discovered a mutual passion for watches and clocks while studying furniture design at Bucks New University.
Of particular influence were the British brands Smiths Sectric and Gents of Leicester, famed for their electric wall- and desk-clock designs, hugely popular in schools, offices and other municipal environments in Britain during the 1950s. The simple, graphic design of Uniform Wares' timepieces is, in part, a fond homage.
'Coming from a product design background, we have always wanted to show during the London Design Festival but felt that just creating a temporary shop displaying watches wasn't enough,' says Bek. 'Commissioning these 12 artists to create work inspired by time has resulted in a thought-provoking and beautiful series of work. We couldn't be happier with what they've done.'
The resulting prints will be exhibited next to a Uniform Wares watch from the current collection, the hands of which will be set to reflect the hour the artist has illustrated. A limited-edition run of 24 of each print will be available for purchase alongside the watches during the exhibition and online at the Uniform Wares website,