Bell & Ross sometimes enjoys abandoning its usual themes of aviation and the military. In 2009, the watchmaker became one of the first to create a skull watch. Since then, the BR 01 Skull family has grown to include ten members which are greatly sought after by collectors – Bell & Ross BR 01 Cyber Skull Sapphire.
In 2020, the avant-garde Cyber Skull revisited this iconic series. Its faceted design represented a leap into the future. And it was a resounding success.
The latest Cyber Skull Sapphire is a completely translucent, full sapphire version. This technical material fires this icon of the watchmaking world into the realm of transparency and wealth.
In 2009, Bell & Ross became one of the first watchmakers to create a skull watch. The BR01 Skull includes a skull and crossbones in the company’s iconic “circle in a square” case. It was an immediate success.
Bell & Ross then launched other versions:
- In 2016, the Burning Skull introduced more volume to the skull surrounded by flames. This provided the whole with a 3D aspect.
- In 2018, the Laughing Skull incorporated an automaton movement. The jaw moves when winding the crown so that the skull seems to be laughing. Spooky!
- 2020 saw a major break! The new Cyber Skull inaugurated a spectacular black ceramic case with truncated corners and a “pixelated” skull. This avant-garde design fired this watch into the realm of ultra-modernity. It would go on to enjoy great success.
- In 2021, the Cyber Skull Sapphire Only Watch 21 adorned the case with sapphire crystal. With its orange-coloured skull, this unique model was sold at the Only Watch charity auction. The hammer finally fell at a price of 220,000 euros, twice its top estimated value. A genuine success!
- The latest Cyber Skull Sapphire is the “general public” version of this exceptional watch. It reproduces the full sapphire case. However, the faceted skull is transparent on this version. It is a limited version of 10 items. Already a sure value for collectors.
The design of this new Cyber Skull Sapphire breaks with the other skull watches in the neo-vintage style. The sharp edges of the case play with the light, with the multiple facets multiplying the perspectives and reflections.
It draws on several sources of inspiration:
- Avant-garde: it pays homage to the ultra-modern world of informatics and virtual technology. The faceted, pixelated design is a tip of the hat to the digital arts.
- Origami: its angular design is reminiscent of the ancestral Japanese art of paper folding, transposed into the future.
- Military: the case is shaped like the fuselage of an American F117 stealth bomber. This faceted design allows it to vanish from radar screens. All eyes, however, are on the Cyber Skull Sapphire.
The transparency of sapphire
The Bell & Ross BR 01 Cyber Skull Sapphire is a UFO of the watchmaking world. The base is a Cyber Skull, which has nevertheless been developed entirely in colourless sapphire crystal. It plays the transparency card to the full, including in the translucent rubber strap.
The skull and crossbones are captured between two sapphire crystals, so that they appear to be floating in the air.
Initially, the sapphire is a precious block of very hard glass. A material that is very difficult to shape. The slightest error means starting all over again.
The Bell & Ross BR 01 Cyber Skull Sapphire combines design and watchmaking excellence. This high-end watch boasts a BR-CAL.209 automaton movement. Specifically developed for the watch, this manual-wind skeleton calibre is almost invisible. It takes the form of the skull. The skeleton form reveals some of the interesting technical parts, including the cogs, balance and more.
The plate and bridges follow the outline of the skull before extending below the crossbones. The spring balance placed at “twelve o’clock” symbolises the brain in this skull which is very much alive.
Bell & Ross BR 01 Cyber Skull Sapphire Technical Specifications
REF. BR01-CSK-SAPHIR – 105,000 €
- hours and minutes.
- Moving skull when wound by hand.
- calibre BR-CAL.209.
- hand-wound mechanical Manufacture.
- Skeletonised, rhodium-plated main plate and bridges.
- 21 jewels.
- 28,800 vph.
- Incabloc shock protection system.
- 48-hour power reserve.
- length 43.50 mm, width 45 mm.
- Faceted polished steel crown.
- Sapphire case back.
- Crystal: sapphire with anti-reflective coating with logo and 12 engraved indices.
- Water-resistance: 30 metres.
- skeletonised faceted sapphire.
- Faceted sapphire skull.
- Balance at 12 o’clock.
- Translucent rubber.
- Steel with black PVD (Physical Vapour Deposition) finish.