FRIDAY WIND DOWN: Do the GPHG awards really reflect the people’s choice?Zach Blass
This past week, the 2021 GPHG nominations have been announced and, as usual, collectors and enthusiasts have expressed their bafflement at some of the pieces up for various prizes. To recap, each year an academy of industry experts, journalists and influencers is assembled to determine the nominees for these prestigious awards – with 30 of these members ultimately selected to serve as the final jury. The inevitable result is that the people who determine the nominations, and eventually the winners, are established members of the industry. This, perhaps, means that the voters can be a little too close to the brands and their products.
To be fair, it is not insane to have industry experts cast their votes. It just means that, like the Oscars, the resulting winners are, to use Rotten Tomatoes terminology, more of a “critic’s choice” than an “audience score”. Another key component is that brands have to submit pieces for consideration, and not all brands elect to do so – powerhouse manufacturers Rolex and Patek Philippe, for example, don’t bother. Interestingly, brands also have to pay a CHF 700 fee for each submitted entry and another CHF 6000 if their watch gets a nomination. This gives conglomerates a larger advantage because they can more comfortably submit candidates. As an example, Piaget has a total of six nominations this year which means the total cost of participation is at least CHF 40,200. So, for budding microbrands this potentially poses a challenge in regard to the expense.
Does this mean the GPHG should change the ballot process? Or does the inevitable disconnect between the onlooking watch community and industry panel reveal a demand for a separate show with prizes democratically awarded by watch enthusiasts around the world? Well, only time will tell, but if you would like to check out the full list of nominations for this year you can head over right here.
Hope you all have a wonderful weekend,
Watch meme of the week: @watchtaster mocks waitlists
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As someone who put a 50% deposit down on June 2nd for a Rolex Datejust 36, and was quoted an ETA of 8-12 weeks, I was hoping to get my watch before my birthday in a few days. Unfortunately, it looks like that will not happen – and it is not the end of the world. But it raises the question, now more than 12 weeks later, if not now, then when? Almost a year ago, I decided not to wait for the call regarding a candy pink Rolex Oyster Perpetual 36 – purchasing a Grand Seiko SBGA413 instead (which now that I own it I genuinely believe is the better watch). But I never took my name off the enigmatic “list” and never received any further correspondence on the OP, so it is my hope I am not just being strung along for this Datejust. I haven’t completely lost faith it will arrive soon, but if I don’t get the call before the end of the year my watch-hunting instincts may naturally kick in, resulting in me getting my deposit refunded and opting for an altogether different watch.
Wrist shot of the week: @timepeacelove captures the essence of a daily moment
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As someone, like many of you, who spends hours upon hours at my laptop each day for work, this shot from @timepeacelove really hits home with me. Whether a new or older watch in the collection, there is always a moment each day where you sigh and take a breath at the day’s events. And then you glance at your watch to see where you are in your 9 to 5, having a much needed moment of serenity as you take in the dial of your timepiece. Here @timepeacelove is actually wearing his wife’s Seiko Presage Cocktail ‘Tequila Sunset’, which really pops in the overcast naturally lit setting of the shot. As expected, the Seiko has a highly intriguing texture to its dial and the gradient pink hue is as refreshing as… well… a sip of a tequila sunset.
Recommended viewing of the week: HSNY hosts Emmanuel Breguet & Jeffery Kingston to talk all things tourbillon
The first week of each month, the Horological Society of New York hosts lectures that are fantastic opportunities to enjoy a deep dive into various aspects of horology. Today is the HSNY’s first hybrid in-person/virtual lecture, as the pandemic had resulted in strictly virtual lectures taking the place of in-person lectures (also recorded, but made immediately available only to members and then later to the public). The topic of today’s lecture is the history of the tourbillon, where lecturers Emmanuel Breguet (a direct descendant of Breguet brand founder and tourbillon creator Abraham-Louis Breguet) and Jeffrey Kingston will explore these topics as well as the modern evolution of the coveted complication. The lecture was presented earlier today at 7pm EST, but keep an eye out for it on YouTube when the time comes and in the meantime comb through the previous lectures that have already been uploaded.
My favorite T+T coverage of the week:
INTERVIEW: DJ Carl Cox reveals why he made a watch with Zenith
DJ Carl Cox reveals his relationship with time, timepieces, and the Zenith brand in this in-depth interview with the legendary artist. Click here to dive in.
This is why everyone is going crazy about the Longines Titanium Spirit
Ricardo delves into one of this week’s hottest new releases, digging into why everyone is raving about the new Longines Titanium Spirit. Click here for the full introduction.
DON’T FEED THE HYPE: 6 alternatives to the Rolex Submariner
Looking for viable alternatives to the Rolex Submariner? In this latest entry into the “Don’t Feed the Hype” series, I explore six options.