Chanel J12 CyberneticApril 26, 2023
At Watches and Wonders this year, iconic fashion brand Chanel entered the event with a handful of new timepieces all following a futuristic theme. Dubbed the Interstellar Capsule Collection, the capsule uses motifs from the worlds of science fiction, space, and time travel, presenting new interpretations of the brand’s J12, Première, Boy-Friend, and Code Coco watches. Attributes of the collection include a circuit board design, phosphorescent effects, a star charm and a 3D robot, each model encouraging a playful rendition of science-inspired themes.
Chief among the new releases was the Chanel J12 Cybernetic, which centrally used the base J12 format and experiments with design via a pixelated concept. The graphic design takes shape in a highly resistant ceramic and steel case, using white ceramic patches with pixel-shaped cut outs to create a jagged edge on one side. The asymmetry of the case creates an assertive and ultramodern silhouette, while still remaining manageable with its 38mm diameter. The fixed bezel is decorated with black and white varnish, continuing the pixelated pattern from the case. On the reverse is an exhibition caseback revealing mention of the Chanel J12 Cybernetic’s limited edition status.
The main dial is lacquered in a rich black hue, creating a sleek back drop for a matte white decorative varnish over top. Once again continuing the pixelated motif from the case and bezel, the white varnish is used to create square tiles on the left hand side of the dial. The tiles are dispersed so as not to cover the entire background, creating the appearance of the dial design almost glitching, as if it were electronic. As a result, only the indices from 6 to 12 o’clock are visible, with Chanel opting for slim Arabic style numerals. In the center of the dial is a white minute track, while the seconds track is situated on the periphery of the dial.
Powering the experimental design is the caliber 12.1, a self-winding movement produced by Kenissi and co-owned by Chanel. It is capable of indicating hours, minutes, and seconds and has a relatively substantial power reserve of 70 hours.
For a more glamorous approach to the Chanel J12 Cybernetic, Chanel also introduced the J12 Hyper Cybernetic, which replaces the white space with diamonds. Across the tiles on the dial, bezel, and case are a total of 240 brilliant-cut diamonds with an additional gem on the crown, amounting to approximately 1.3 carat of diamonds total.