A preview of the novelties that will be presented by Van Cleef & Arpels at the upcoming Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie, the new Lady Arpels Papillon Automate watch depicts the random fluttering of a butterfly, accompanying the passage of time against a bucolic backdrop.
The butterfly is settled on a flower and, as the hours and minutes flow on the right, it comes to life with random beats of its wings, two to five times in a row, depending on the power reserve.
When the watch is not being worn, the butterfly is set in motion 19 times per hour at irregular intervals. When the watch is on the wrist, the rhythm speeds up and the 19 beats are reached in 30 minutes if the arm is active.
The butterfly can also be activated on demand: by pressing the push-button on the caseband the wings will beat five consecutive times.
The dial is enriched by several decorative techniques. A moon in paillonné enamel is reflected in water set with blue, mauve and violet sapphires.
The butterfly, whose wings are adorned with two shades of plique-à-jour enamel, appears on a flower of sculpted mother-of-pearl.
The 38 mm white gold case is entirely set with diamonds. Its transparent back showcases the decorated oscillating weight of the automatic mechanical movement for which four patents were filed by Van Cleef & Arpels.
The Van Cleef & Arpels Lady Arpels Papillon Automate is completed by a blue alligator strap with a white gold pin buckle also set with diamonds. vancleefarpels.com