On January 8, 2018, the Palace Museum and Cartier jointly launched the documentary ‘The Art of Waking Time’. The film was produced by a team led by famous director Li Shaohong. It records the cooperation between the Palace Museum and Cartier’s watch protection and restoration experts to repair six pieces of watch and clock cultural relics in the Palace Museum. It is an important witness for both parties to build a milestone in the protection and inheritance of cultural heritage.
The cooperation between the Palace Museum and Cartier began in the 1990s. As a special cultural heritage of China, the Palace Museum condenses and represents the essence of Chinese culture. In recent years, it has become more and more open, and international exchanges and cooperation have been increasing. As a world-renowned jewellery and watch brand with a history of more than 170 years, Cartier has always drawn the essence of different cultures into its own creation. Both parties have a strong sense of mission for the protection and inheritance of cultural heritage. In 2014, experts from the Palace Museum and Cartieraschaft’s watchmaking workshop began frequent exchanges and visits. After in-depth inspection and research, the two parties decided to jointly restore the six watch and clock relics in the Palace Museum. The watch protection and restoration experts of the Palace Museum, led by Mr. Wang Jin, were responsible for repairing the appearance of the clocks, and the experts of Cartier La Chardonnay Watchmaking Workshop were responsible for the clock machines Core repair.
After establishing the intention of cooperation, Cartier’s watch protection and restoration experts carefully checked the six watch and cultural relics, reviewed a large number of historical documents, and formulated a restoration plan based on the principles of cultural relic protection that preserved the original appearance of the cultural relics to the greatest extent and minimized interference. stand by. Subsequently, the six cultural relics traveled across the ocean to the Cartier Watchmaking Workshop in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, where they were jointly repaired by the expert teams of the Palace Museum and Cartier. The west wind spreads eastward, and after hundreds of years of baptism in the Chinese land, it returns to the west again. Six long-seal clocks are waiting to rejuvenate their vitality.
The collection of clocks and watches of the Palace Museum can be regarded as one of the best in its kind in the World Museum. Most of these exquisitely made and complex timepieces come from the West, representing the highest level of clockmaking in the 18th to 19th centuries; the exchange of objects and stars, the rare treasures of the past for royal appreciation now have more precious historical value and carry deep cultural connotations . Time has passed to the 21st century. With the joint efforts of experts in the protection and restoration of clocks in the East and the West, six clocks that have been silent for 100 years sounded ticking and ticking sounds again, as if the East and the West, history and reality, carried out a time and space Conversation. This is a ‘craft of awakening time’, and the pace of time never stops.
The cooperation between the Palace Museum and Cartier, which lasted three years, can be described as a bold cultural adventure in the field of watch technology and humanities. The repair process lasted nearly half a year and took nearly a thousand man-hours. It was saved through the lens recording of the famous director Li Shaohong. The documentary filming team followed the project team to Switzerland and left a precious video record for this landmark international project of cultural relic restoration.
Shan Xixiang, President of the Palace Museum said: ‘China attaches great importance to the heritage and protection of cultural heritage and strengthens cultural exchanges between China and foreign countries. The Palace Museum shoulders its historical mission and is committed to carrying forward the traditional craftsmanship and heritage protection and heritage. The source of cooperation between the Palace Museum and Cartier It can be traced back to the 1990s, and has maintained good mutual visits and exchanges since then. We are very grateful for the technical support provided by Cartier Watchmaking Workshop for the repair work of the six watch and clock movements in the Palace Museum collection. We look forward to the future More cooperation with Cartier. ‘
Cyrille Vigneron, global CEO of Cartier, said: ‘The Palace Museum’s watch collection is world-renowned and is on par with the collection of jade and ceramics. Among them are the ingenious masterpieces, as well as the century-old exquisite watchmaking skills. The museum team’s careful restoration of the museum’s collection of watch and clock relics is no different for Cartier than a humanistic journey full of new knowledge and inspiration. This ‘Wake Up Time’ documentary is not only an extraordinary master of Eastern and Western watchmaking. The precious testimony of cooperation is also a fruit of the long-standing mutual trust between the Palace Museum and Cartier. ‘
Director Li Shaohong said: ‘I hope that through this documentary, I will show the ingenuity of experts in the protection and restoration of Eastern and Western watches and watch, and awaken the unique ‘memory’ hidden in these ancient watches.’
Palace Museum cooperates with Cartier to complete six watch relics
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Next: Two gold-plated griffon watch mirrors; next two: gold-plated watch-back
(The copyright of the above picture is owned by the Palace Museum)
Joint repair scene
(Figures 1 to 3 are copyrighted by Emmanuel Schmitt, and Figure 4 is copyrighted by the Palace Museum.)
The Palace Museum Cultural Relics Hospital: The Palace Museum has a collection of 1.86 million cultural relics. At the same time, it preserves many ancient Chinese-specific cultural relics. The traditional manual techniques are preserved. It also has ancient calligraphy and painting frame restoration techniques, ancient calligraphy and painting reproduction techniques, bronze restoration techniques, ancient times. Five state-level intangible cultural heritages, including clock and watch restoration skills and official ancient building construction skills. The Palace Museum Hospital is located in the Palace Museum and has about 200 cultural relic protection and restoration staff. It is currently the largest cultural relics protection institution in China with the largest area, the most complete functions, the most complete scientific research facilities, and the largest number of professionals. It is divided into science and technology protection areas, analysis and detection areas, painting and calligraphy repair areas, comprehensive craft repair areas, and comprehensive arts. Product repair area, metal watch repair area. The types of cultural relics to be restored and reproduced include paintings and calligraphy, woodware, lacquerware, inlaid treasures, metal, clocks, ceramics, stone, weaving and embroidery, Thangka, murals, oil paintings, architectural color paintings, etc., and the production of cultural relic capsules. In addition, the Palace Museum has also established the International Cultural Relics Conservation Society Training Center, the China-Greek Cultural Laser Technology Joint Laboratory, the National Research Center for the Protection of Ancient Ceramics, the National Research Center for Cultural Heritage, the National Palace Museum-Shanghai Light Source Joint Laboratory, and other cultural relics protection at home and abroad. Cooperation projects. The significance of setting up a cultural relics hospital lies in the following: firstly, because cultural relics restoration is a scientific process, just as patients go to the hospital to see a doctor, it requires not only empirical judgement by artisans with traditional techniques, but also the use of various types of analytical testing equipment to diagnose. The second is the significant increase in the popularity of cultural relic restoration in recent years. By showing the process of cultural relic restoration, we hope to make the audience understand the science of cultural relic restoration and appreciate the ‘craftsman spirit’ advocated by cultural relic restoration workers.
Cartier LaChaux-de-Fonds Watchmaking Workshop
LaChaux-de-Fonds watchmaking workshop: Since its establishment, Cartier is known for its sophisticated watchmaking skills, and its watch works have all shown extraordinary production techniques and outstanding artistic accomplishments. In the 1970s, Cartier bought some watchmaking factories in LaChaux-de-Fonds, and entered the heart of Swiss watchmaking. Cartier currently has a total of six watchmaking workshops in Switzerland. The watchmaking workshop in La Chaux-de-Fonds was completed in 2000, integrating many of the watchmaking units of the brand scattered in La Chaux-de-Fonds at the time. This watchmaking workshop covering an area of over 30,000 square meters is the center of Cartier timepiece design and production. It has the most advanced technology and equipment, and is also one of the largest fully integrated watchmaking workshops in Switzerland. The workshop brought together more than 1,200 skilled craftsmen from 37 countries, covering 175 watchmaking skills, which belonged to the movement research and development, watch production, quality control and customer service departments, and the restoration department (the restored watch and clock movements this time That is mainly done in the watch repair department). As one of the few watchmaking workshops that can completely design, manufacture and repair its own watches and movements, it represents the perfect fusion of high technology and craftsmanship.