Rado has announced Joachim Froment as the winner of its inaugural Rado Star Prize UK. The award underlines the brand’s commitment to the design arena, while highlighting new talent in interior, industrial and technology design. Froment was awarded the prize for his dining style ‘0.6’ Chair’ at Designjunction in King’s Cross, London. The judges, who included Konstantin Grcic – and who redesigned the classic Rado Ceramica this year – drew up a shortlist of 6 designers, who were challenged to ‘design time’. Their responses are revealed this week.
The announcement also acts as a fitting plaform for Rado to unveil three new designer editions of the Rado True, its round, monobloc ceramic watch, first launched in 2006. They include industrial designer Rainer Mutsch, Swiss design studio Big-Game and interior designer Samuel Amoia.
The Rado ‘True Phospho’ by Big-Game
The perforated brass dial features geometric indices created by filling the holes with Super-LumiNova, so that the watch movement is visible beneath – the finished effect is similar to peeking through the mesh used in speaker grills. For the three Big-Game designers – Augustin Scott de Martinville, Grégoire Jeanmonod and Elric Petit – the original minimalist design concept of the True could be extended to the very elements of the watch. They say, ‘The key words of this project were minimalism and lightness, so we decided to make the design by removing material rather than by adding it. The perforated dial reveals the movement below and creates spaces for the phosphorescent indexes, embodying the idea of less is more.’
The Rado ‘True Blaze’ by Samuel Amoia
New York interior designer Sam Amoia is known for his textural mixes of metal and stone. The ‘True Blaze’ dial is a round of dense, frosted silver glitter, with Rado’s gold logo and the elongated indices applied directly to the underside of the glass to give the illusion that they are floating. The dial’s sparkling surface is galvanised using a process that replicates the crystalline structure of diamond powder. For Amoia, the design process necessitated some adaptation: ‘I have never worked on something so small in scale, so there are new challenges that we had to figure out. Obviously designing spaces and furniture involves a different approach, so we tried to translate what we could into the timepiece: it’s not traditional, yet it’s simple and timeless.’
The Rado ‘True Stratum’ by Rainer Mutsch
Austrian industrial designer Rainer Mutsch’s ‘True Stratum” features a concave dial with a large black dot on the underside of the sapphire crystal. ‘I was playing with materiality, manufacturing processes and the idea of ambient light’, he says. ‘I was trying to re-question how time is displayed by introducing an element of three-dimensionality on the dial. Its appearance changes constantly depending on the light, always creating new reflections and gradients.’ Concentric rings draw the eye down from the edge of the dial; on the left hand side, the rings are evenly spaced, while on the right they bunch up around the logo plate. Turn the watch over and the same radiant lines are engraved on the caseback.
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