AUDEMARS PIGUET CELEBRATES THE 50th ANNIVERSARY OF ITS ICONIC ROYAL OAK
Swiss Haute Horlogerie manufacturer Audemars Piguet celebrates the anniversary of the Royal Oak – which was officially launched on April 15, 1972 at the Basel Fair – with a host of events in key cities around the world. Among the highlights, the Manufacture is happy to unveil a series of public immersive sensory experiences to be lived in Dubai, Zurich, New York and Shanghai between April and July 2022. These in-situ installations and edutainment platforms offer a journey into the Royal Oak’s multifaceted world through an experiential overview of its 50 years of design and technical innovation.
“We are delighted to celebrate the Royal Oak’s 50th anniversary with our community and watch lovers worldwide. This icon is 50 years young today! It is this incredible youthful spirit that has driven its evolution since the beginning, keeping it ahead of its time.” François-Henry Bennahmias – Chief Executive Officer, Audemars Piguet
WORLDWIDE ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATIONS
The Royal Oak’s anniversary celebration is kicking off around the world with the reveal of the brand’s first dedicated immersive installation located at the heart of the Dubai Mall, where it will stay from 15 – 24 April, 2022. Visitors are invited to dive deep into the Royal Oak’s cultural universe and follow the journey of this timepiece from its first inspirations to its evolving conversation with the larger cultural world. Its 5-decade history is presented through surprising and immersive edutainment content inspired by the Royal Oak’s multiple facets, past, present and future, and the daring vision that has animated it since its inception. A display of contemporary and heritage timepieces will complement the experience. Visitors will also be able to test their knowledge of the Royal Oak and of the brand as a whole through an entertaining digital challenge. Additional immersive experiences will be available to the public in Zurich from 6 – 12 May, in New York City from 19 – 25 May and in Shanghai in July.
A series of local pop-up exhibitions, on view from April through September in Tokyo, Hong Kong and London, echoes the youthful spirit of the dedicated sensory in-situ installations. These pop-up exhibitions follow the Royal Oak’s evolution within the watchmaking landscape and beyond through a display of contemporary and heritage timepieces spanning the collection’s history.
Last but not least, exclusive dinners are taking place in major hubs including Singapore, Taipei, Bangkok, London and Turin, where clients and collectors are invited to exhibit their iconic Royal Oak timepieces alongside a selection of models from the Heritage collection.
A TRIBUTE TO THE ROYAL OAK’S OFFICIAL LAUNCH
The Royal Oak designed by Gérald Genta for Audemars Piguet was revealed on April 15, 1972, at the Basel Fair. This avant-garde timepiece created a stir with its large body of hand-finished stainless steel, its octagonal bezel secured with visible hexagonal screws, its highly stylised integrated steel bracelet and its extra-thin selfwinding mechanism. Despite its controversial beginnings, this watch combining sportiness with ancestral expertise ushered in the beginning of a new fine watchmaking era in tune with changing lifestyles. A true blend of ancestral craftsmanship and technological advances, the Royal Oak has been a canvas for design innovation ever since.
50 years on, over 500 Royal Oak models have been created, showcasing different sizes, materials, styles and movements, all contributing to turning this iconoclast into a cultural icon within and beyond watchmaking. Today, the 50th anniversary festivities bring watch enthusiasts together to pay tribute to this timepiece’s remarkable history and youthful spirit, which continues to inspire people across fields of creative practice.