Jaeger-LeCoultre is celebrating the links between design and watchmaking with a sound and light extravaganza held at London’s 1931 Cinema, a specially created open-air venue at Battersea Power Station. British musician TØKIO M¥ERS has composed the soundtrack for the show, commissioned as part of Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Made of Makers programme. Here, Jaeger-LeCoultre CEO Catherine Renier tells us why the show represents the pinnacle of culture, watch design, and creativity.
The Golden Ratio Musical Show by Jaeger LeCoultre and Tokio Myers
Wallpaper*: Why did a partnership with TØKIO M¥ERS feel like a natural one for Jaeger Le-Coultre?
Catherine Renier: This partnership came about very naturally as we chose each other. For all our collaborations, we like to feel we share common ground in terms of values and how we perceive and create art. We realised quickly that we have a very similar understanding of emotion, respect for creativity and hard work. What we enjoyed with TØKIO M¥ERS was his approach to music, to reinventing classical music and bringing many genres into his own creations. We feel that his respect for history and his way of drawing inspiration from past and recent decades to create a new piece, a totally new symphony, is very similar to what we do: both respecting our past while bringing a sense of innovation. This is a way to convey our passion to the public, as well as open our doors to a wider audience beyond watchmaking and bring attention to art in a very dynamic and collaborative way.
W*: What links does the show celebrate between watchmaking and design?
CR: With The Golden Ratio Musical Show, we continue to expand the cultural conversation around design and watchmaking, exploring their elemental links through the lens of the Reverso watch, which is widely acknowledged as an icon of 20th-century design. The show’s specially designed setting, the 1931 Cinema, also offers our guests the chance to immerse themselves in the ambiance and style of the art deco period, when the Reverso was born.
The centrepiece of the 1931 Cinema is The Golden Ratio Musical Show, an enthralling sound-and-light show projected onto an impressive screen of falling water. This show is accompanied by a commissioned soundtrack from M¥ERS, who has specially composed his piece with a tempo based on the golden ratio, which he translated from 1.618 to 161.8 beats per minute, and [which includes] sounds that are inspired by the chiming of our watches.
The show tells the story of the golden ratio in four chapters, from the observation of nature to the quest to define a formula for beauty, to mankind’s creation of beautiful objects governed by the golden ratio and concluding with the Reverso, which expresses the spirit of harmony with such eloquence.
W*: What are you most proud of in the Made of Makers programme?
CR: It would be difficult to point out one specific moment, as I am proud of so many parts of the Made of Makers programme. In the past few years, we invited a series of renowned artists and craft enthusiasts to collaborate with us with the idea of bringing unique experiences of Jaeger-LeCoultre to the public around the world. It allows us to expand our horizons and express ourselves through new media that generate emotions, cultivate curiosity, and enlarge the dialogue that exists between horology and art. Between the artistic world and Jaeger-LeCoultre, there is an organic bond in the exploration of creativity and in the respect of crafts. We look for artistic collaborations that are based on authenticity and shared values of precision, innovation combined with unique know-how, and nature at its core.
We make sure all the artists come to the manufacture, in our Vallée de Joux to meet our artisans. They always find a connection with their work, the tools they use and the passion they have. Through the Made of Makers programme, we had the opportunity to work with the artist Zimoun on a sound installation; Michael Murphy on a Reverso anamorphosis called Spacetime; lettering artist Alex Trochut; Guillaume Marmin with Passengers: Through Time; pastry chef Nina Métayer; mixologist Mathias Giroud; digital media artist Yiyun Kang; and British musician TØKIO M¥ERS.
W*: What can visitors look forward to in the show?
CR: Following the première in Shanghai and then Los Angeles, we will have the pleasure of welcoming guests to The Golden Ratio Musical Show in London from 14 to 17 September 2023. The show will be the centrepiece of the 1931 Cinema, taking place at the Battersea Power Station, one of London’s most iconic art deco buildings. The inspiring sound-and-light show will celebrate the golden ratio with a specially commissioned soundtrack composed by M¥ERS. Guests will also be able to enjoy a series of activities over the four days, including a talk and performance by [the musician] on ‘Reinvention of Classics’, hosted by Reggie Yates on September 14. We really want to make the public feel like they are taken back into the 1930s and provide a fully immersive experience where they can educate themselves about the golden ratio.
The 1931 Cinema will be open free of charge to the public on 14 September, and from 15-17 September from 10am to 10pm, with The Golden Ratio Musical Show beginning at 7pm and running on a 20-minute cycle until 10pm.