Ultimate Cars, Watches & Hi Fi S04 ep6 : Vincent Calabrese, Calabrese Watches, [Switzerland]
Interview with Vincent Calabrese
The creations of Vincent Calabrese, a self-taught, iconoclastic watchmaker-philosopher represent provocative challenges to mechanical traditions in general and to horological traditions in particular. The number, the diversity and the originality of his creations have earned him international fame as one of the most fertile creative minds in the watch business. His watch making style enables him to make unique and personalised movements in any shape or form. His technical features such as the Flying Tourbillon with classic or regulator display are matched by his aesthetic accomplishments, and his extremely complex creations are surprising both for their pure beauty and for their deceptively simple appearance.
With the watch I can speak in every language, for me is just a tool.
I like to make the watch because it is the most difficult machine in the world. I make every part. I make the movement, I make
the case, I make the engraving, the numbering [11:50], it’s a challenge. Life is a challenge if we have no challenge we have no life.
I say always when we have sun we make nothing, but we have rain we are obliged to search for an umbrella.
I born in Naples and I lived in Naples about 18 years. Because if I stayed I am obliged to go to soldier. I don’t like to say “yes sir” I
prefer to say “butperhaps”.
My mother, she doesn’t want I make a profession to watch cleaner [12:50]. She sees a watch shop, the watch reception
advertised.First start when I was 15. I came to Leo Emile [13:03] to repair the alarm clock, Leo obliged me to buy the tool for the
profession. Now I have the tool, I work independent.
When I came to Switzerland, I say to them I am a watchmaker, they say it’s not possible you are not Swiss. Aah I think now they
believe I am a watchmaker.
I work in many factories. I make tissots inaudible [13:45] and after I work in the little factories in Marche near Lausanne for make
the Rabiage [13:55]
Every people heer that work in factories they make just one part to repair the whole watch. And this one inaudible[14:07] of a
chance because I can now make many many different inaudible [14:11] and I repair different parts.
I start and I grow in Montenegro [14:23] a station of ski and in this shop I have a custom thing of some president of inaudible
[14:35] Catherine etc etc. I sell Patek, I sell Rolex, I sell Piquet, I have all brand in this very important shop. Every time the
factories ask for
all moment in the letter of the person I too difficult. In this shop I start in 72and this idea I have in 75.
When I was born, we had 5 persons in the family and we live in Nerun [15:32] 20 meters from everyone. And after 30 years I am
responsible for a shop where I have the bigger people of the world. The king of Belgium is here and I am here.
If I make the letter A inaudible [15:58] is always the line. But is too difficult because every time we have another shape to make
order. Finally if I make the right shape I can deposit a Brevet the patent. And I sell the patent and I with the manual patent I can
start my activity. And I deposit the patent for Golden Bridge.
I had it in 77. I show it in a salon in Geneva and I have a gold medal. And after I sell to Corum.
I start this watch for a museum for challenge that the watch is really difficult. I am obliged to inaudible [17:02] many many things
after 2 years when I finish the work and I see the first time balance I was in tears and my life changed. Because I understand the
only truth in life is the truth. Is it just the pleasure to make something. We know I am, I exist, I exist for myself.
The Golden Bridge immediately is a big big success and in the 80s we have 2 inaudible [17:48]magazines. The watch in
Switzerland perhaps 10 in the world not more. But every people says of this watch immediately I had a good knowledge with the
journalist. When in 83 I decided to create an academy, I asked Anderson because he speaks German and he speaks English. And
we had academy, my name and the success of academy. I can inaudible [18:18] I speak with the Belgian and I ask them write us
in a special exposition. And the day after I read this inaudible [18:32] in the area for3 years inaudible [18:37].
They create the academybecause I will give the word for craftsman for real watchmaker. And in 85 we have 3 factories we have
Etera, Pigget and Jajaonicle [19:02]. Its finished they have no research and development. Now when you see the factory there
inaudible [9:16] . The academy is about 60% of the success of inaudible [19:25] today.
Five years ago I decide to sell my factory to sell inaudible [19:40] but when I find my freedom I decided to spend my time with
my friend Jack Azis because he makes fabulous clocks, he is 82 and I don’t want he disappear. I live withinaudible [19:58] and I
decide to create a little factory to make these clocks. It’s not my work but the challenge is my work.
For me is important I work alone because I say when I’m born I am alone, when I’m dead I will be alone, in life I am alone. I have
some good moments in life, always alone. And when the moment is not good it’s never lost because it gives me the energy for
the next time.
OFFICIAL WEBSITE: Vincent Calabrese, Calabrese Watches, Switzerland