Are these the most affordable Swiss sapphire tourbillons? Inside the ArtyA Purity Tourbillon family Are these the most affordable Swiss sapphire tourbillons? Inside the ArtyA Purity Tourbillon family

Are these the most affordable Swiss sapphire tourbillons? Inside the ArtyA Purity Tourbillon family

Buffy Acacia

Some people say that the key to success is to find a niche and fill it, and that’s exactly what ArtyA have been doing in recent years. From cases that are designed to look like guitar headstocks to cases that have been struck by lightning, their extreme expressiveness is what sets them apart from any other eccentric Swiss watchmaker. But, one of their most eye-catching ranges is surprisingly accessible, and that’s the Purity Tourbillon collection. Of course, the word accessible is subjective here, but for full sapphire cases and artfully crafted tourbillon movements, there is actually a degree of bang for one’s buck. Let’s explore the three watches that make up the Purity Tourbillon family, as well as their variations.

ArtyA Purity Tourbillon

ArtyA Purity Tourbillon Family 1

First released in 2021, the Purity Tourbillon is one of the boldest statement pieces I’ve seen. Not only is it a statement to wear, but it’s also ArtyA showing that they can do anything and everything better than anyone else. Starting with the movement, ArtyA is well aware that tourbillons are more for staring at than they are for precise timekeeping. In service of that, the tourbillon cage has been made 50% larger than standard sizing to a whopping 17mm, taking up a huge portion of the dial. It’s also been given plenty of space, essentially occupying the left half of the dial by itself and seemingly floating in mid-air. Aside from some simple black structures which link the tourbillon to the dual mainsprings and the rest of the components, the openworked movement is almost entirely unrestricted from struts or plates. In addition to being bigger than most tourbillons, the Purity Tourbillon beats at 4Hz, which is much smoother than most others.

ArtyA Purity Tourbillon Family 2

For a case that is completely transparent, the Purity Tourbillon tries to be as visible as possible. It’s a whopping 45.5mm in diameter, but the lugs are relatively short and stubby, giving it the best chance of wearing nicely. Realistically, this isn’t a watch that anyone will be trying to hide beneath a cuff. It’s easy to think of something like this as a super-precious dress watch – but remember, that sapphire is the second-hardest material in the world. That means it’s actually incredibly rugged and scratch-resistant. Throw in the 72-hour power reserve, and this is a sapphire-cased tourbillon watch that you could wear in almost any situation. The only thing to be careful of would be the water resistance of 30 metres.

ArtyA Tiny Purity Tourbillon

ArtyA Purity Tourbillon Family 3

Calling a 39mm watch ‘tiny’ might be a drastic overstatement, but nevertheless, the sentiment is there. It’s a smaller version of the regular Purity Tourbillon, but all of the important components have remained the same size. Even though the movement has been squished together, the 17mm jumbo tourbillon retains its pride of place on the left side of the dial, and the smaller case actually makes the cage look even bigger. Perhaps the most impressive aspect of the Tiny Purity Tourbillon is how it’s inspired ArtyA to experiment further with sapphire as a material, not just releasing it in different colours, but playing around at the molecular level.

ArtyA Purity Tourbillon Family 4

NanoSaphir is the name that ArtyA have given their range of experimental sapphire cases, but some are more magical than others. The most basic level is still impressive though, with the Bicolor references playfully fusing two colours together within one cohesive block of material. This is achieved during the creation of the sapphire, mixing in different impurities which create the colours and keeping them separated. On the mystical side of things, the NanoSaphir Chameleon versions are available in both the Purity and Tiny Purity watches. Winning the ‘Men’s Complication’ category at the 2023 GPHG awards, this case shifts its colour depending on the angle and lighting from a gorgeous caramel-orange to a sweet green apple. To be honest, I have no idea how they’ve achieved this. Colour-changing sapphires exist in nature but they mostly go vaguely from blue to purple. If I had to guess, I’d say it had something to do with the way the crystal structure is arranged, trapping and releasing specific wavelengths of light only in certain ways.

ArtyA Curvy Purity Tourbillon

ArtyA Purity Tourbillon Family 5

Tonneau case shapes are interesting for their prevalence among haute horology, but they don’t seem to be that popular on the budget end of things. There must be something about the barrel shape which yearns for eccentric design and lavish complication, and that’s exactly what the ArtyA Curvy Purity Tourbillon provides. This arrangement of the movement seems to be the same as the Tiny Purity with its components mashed together, but here it’s been rotated 90 degrees so that the large 17mm tourbillon is positioned at 6 o’clock. The symmetry works brilliantly, reflected in the case design with a 12 o’clock crown that’s also made of sapphire. Its 38.5mm x 43mm proportions have been chosen with ergonomics in mind, trading the hulking case of the original Purity Tourbillon for something elegant, refined, but still eye-catching.

ArtyA Purity Tourbillon Family 6

ArtyA has also given the Curvy Purity Tourbillon something that resembles a dial for the first time,  allowing owners to properly read the time on a track with minute markers and applied hour markers. Of course, they’ve incorporated other colours too. There’s the standard clear sapphire, a version in beautiful emerald green, and a truly funky bicolour arrangement of yellow and purple.

ArtyA Purity Tourbillon pricing & availability

All ArtyA Purity Tourbillon watches have been produced as limited editions of 13 pieces – however, they are also available as unique pieces on request. Price: US$145,000 (Purity & Tiny Purity) / US$155,000 (Curvy Purity) / US$175,000 (NanoSaphir watches).

Brand ArtyA
Model Purity Tourbillon
Tiny Purity Tourbillon
Curvy Purity Tourbillon
Reference NA
Case Dimensions 45.5mm (D) – Purity Tourbillon
39mm (D) – Tiny Purity Tourbillon
38.5mm (W) x 43mm (L) – Curvy Purity Tourbillon
Case Material Sapphire
Water Resistance 30 metres
Crystal(s) Sapphire
Dial Openworked
Bracelet Leather straps
Movement ArtyA in-house Purity Tourbillon movements with a 17mm tourbillon cage and 4Hz beat rate
Power Reserve 72 hours
Functions Hours, minutes, tourbillon
Availability Limited to 13 pieces or available on request
Price US$145,000 (Purity & Tiny Purity)
US$155,000 (Curvy Purity)
US$175,000 (NanoSaphir watches)