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Blancpain – Villeret “Battle of the Queen Cows” Piece Unique

Blancpain’s award winning in-house Métiers d’Art studio is renowned for its mastery of a wide range of artistic crafts, including fine engraving, enameling in multiple forms such as painting, champlevé and cloisonné, along with damascening, shakudō, and more.

Its latest creation - a piece unique (one-of-a-kind model) crafted in gold and in the brand’s cherished shakudō alloy - pays tribute to Switzerland by depicting a “battle of the queen cows” staged in front of the iconic Matterhorn.


This breed of cows from the Val d’Hérens have been part of the Swiss national heritage since 1861. Their ancestors were already present in the Valais in 3,000 BC. Thanks to their sturdy nature and their short legs, these animals are capable of climbing to heights of 3,000 meters and more, and are above all known for their traditional fights held each spring as part of the ritual of taking them up to the alpine meadows.

These bovines contend by butting each other with their head and horns. A cow is declared the winner - the herd’s “queen of queens” - when its opponent turns away or refuses the fight in a token of submission.

On the dial of the Villeret “Battle of the Queen Cows”, Blancpain celebrates another national emblem: the legendary Matterhorn. Towering to an altitude of 4,478 meters above sea level, it is Switzerland’s best-known mountain due to its pyramid shape, and its ascension remains a powerful symbol for alpinists from all the world.


On the new Blancpain timepiece, the dial appliques depicting the cow fight are fashioned in gold and hand-engraved. They are affixed to the dial crafted from shakudō, an alloy composed of gold and copper.

Once joined together, the elements of the dial are given a rokushō patina, which is a copper salt bath into which the dial is dipped. The tint and its intensity are determined by the number of dipping treatments and their duration. It is the studied eye and artistic sensitivity of the engraver that determine the nuances and depth of the rokushō treatment.

The Blancpain logo and the Matterhorn are hand-engraved on the shakudō dial by an in-house artisan working with extremely accurate tools. The cows’ necklace is in yellow gold, incorporated into the red gold cow applique using the damascening technique, which consists of hollowing a cavity into the applique to be filled with another metal, in this case yellow gold.


The latter is then meticulously hammered into the cavity in order to spread it uniformly and thereby smoothen the surface of the applique that will then be engraved and polished, also by hand.

This new Blancpain timepiece is as distinguished technically as it is aesthetically. The 42 mm x 10.55 mm red gold case houses the manual wind calibre 13R3A which offers an 8-day power reserve thanks to its construction with three series-coupled mainspring barrels that unwind in succession. The second barrel takes over from the first before its strength is depleted, and then the third barrel does the same.


The power-reserve indicator is placed on a bridge on the reverse of the movement, visible through the sapphire case back.

With this technically advanced movement, the Blancpain Villeret “Battle of the Queen Cows” Piece Unique (ref. 6612-3616-55B) sets itself apart from other metiers d’art efforts. blancpain.com


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Time and Watches: Blancpain – Villeret “Battle of the Queen Cows” Piece Unique
Blancpain – Villeret “Battle of the Queen Cows” Piece Unique
Blancpain’s award winning in-house Métiers d’Art studio is renowned for its mastery of a wide range of artistic crafts. Its latest creation brings pays tribute to Switzerland with a piece unique (one-of-a-kind model) crafted in gold and in the brand’s cherished shakudō alloy, depicting a “battle of the queen cows” staged in front of the iconic Matterhorn. With this technically advanced movement, the Blancpain Villeret “Battle of the Queen Cows” Piece Unique (ref. 6612-3616-55B) sets itself apart from other metiers d’art efforts.
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