Masters of Contemporary Watchmaking

Michael Clerizo


The advent of quartz technology had a huge effect on traditional watchmaking. In Switzerland, in the 1970s, tens of thousands lost their jobs in the watch industry, and for a time it looked as if a 500-year-long tradition of skills would be lost forever. Today, against the odds, artist craftsmen have triumphantly brought about the renaissance of the mechanical handmade watch.

The aesthetic agenda is being set by a group of remarkable independents. This book tells their story, and it is beautifully illustrated with hundreds of examples of their virtuoso work.

Here is George Daniels, who systematically set out to surpass the skills of the most celebrated watchmaker of all time, Abraham Louis Breguet. Daniels, the world’s most renowned watchmaker, has even improved upon those eighteenth-century skills by inventing a lever escapement requiring no lubrication. Svend Andersen (Denmark), Vincent Calabrese (Italy), Alain Silberstein and Vianney Halter (France), Aniceto Jiménez Pita (Spain), Marco Lang (Germany), Philippe Dufour, Antoine Preziuso, and Franck Muller (Switzerland), and Roger Smith (England) are among the other participants. In addition to the major interviews, other craftsmen and workshops from Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Holland, Finland, Ireland, and Hungary are introduced and illustrated.


Clerizo has an ear for the lively anecdote and colorful detail. Lavishly illustrated

— Watch Time

This lavishly illustrated book takes the reader beneath the exquisite faces of these handsome objects and shows the even more exquisite nests of springs, gears, flywheels and escapements that make them tick.


Beautifully illustrated…would raise the horological IQ of your coffee table collection more than a few points

— International Wrist Watch

The kind of read you don't want to put down too often, the kind you're tempted to sit up in bed with for a night of anecdote and insight. Brings beautifully to life the fabulous creations of watchmakers

— Qantas Magazine

Takes readers into the minds and workshops of the most celebrated modern watchmakers of our era…. Full of lush photos and watches to lust after.

— Cool Hunting Gift Guide


Michael Clerizo


Michael Clerizo is a contributor to The Wall Street Journal and specialist watch magazines. He is based in London.