A. Lange & Söhne - The Geneva Watch Auction: SEVEN Geneva Saturday, May 12, 2018 | Phillips
  • Manufacturer: A. Lange & Söhne
    Year: 2018
    Reference No: 297.078
    Movement No: 133’413
    Case No: 236’000 further stamped Unique Piece
    Model Name: 1815 “Homage to Walter Lange”
    Material: Stainless Steel
    Calibre: Manual, cal. L1924, 36 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel A. Lange & Söhne pin buckle
    Dimensions: 40.5mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and buckle signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by fitted box and Certificate

  • Catalogue Essay

    No estimate can be provided given the uniqueness of the watch and the noble nature of the charitable cause.

    Lot offered without reserve

    Walter Lange (1924-2017) is undoubtedly one of the most important figures of modern watchmaking. Great grandson of Ferdinand Adolph Lange, the founder of the company in 1845, Walter Lange, along with another genius of his time Günter Blümlein brought back German watchmaking with a bang in 1994 with the rebirth of A. Lange & Söhne.

    A. Lange & Söhne immediately obtained critical and commercial success, connoisseurs lauding the elegant designs and complex movements. A certain number of the brand’s timepieces have reached iconic status in just a few short years: Lange 1, Pour le Merite Tourbillon, Datograph and more recently the Zeitwerk to name just a few.

    The passing of Walter Lange early 2017 was not only a huge loss for the industry and the company but even more for the men and women who had been working with him throughout the years. The teams decided to pay homage to this great man by creating a timepiece that he had been thinking about for quite some time, a watch that was originally conceived by his great-grandfather and granted one of Germany’s first patents in 1877: a timepiece with independently stoppable jumping center seconds and separate seconds subdial.

    In less than one year, the watchmakers and engineers from Glashütte achieved the feat of creating a brand new movement with jumping seconds, the “1815 Homage to Walter Lange” was born. The newly developed movement has a special caliber designation: L1924. It refers to Walter Lange’s birth year. Additionally, the first three digits of the reference number 297.078 recall his date of birth, 29 July.

    Presented at the Salon International de Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) in January 2018, this new model is made in a limited edition of 145 pieces in white gold, 90 pieces in pink gold, 27 pieces in yellow gold and the present unique piece in stainless steel and black grand feu enamel dial.

    We can't underline enough the uniqueness of steel in A. Lange & Söhne's production. Historically, haute horlogerie brands have always housed their creations in noble metals, stainless steel always being the exception and making these examples extremely rare. A. Lange & Söhne created a handful of extremely coveted timepieces in stainless steel in the late 1990s and early 2000s: the steel Lange 1 made for retailers Wempe and Pisa come to mind, along with a unique Tourbillon Pour Le Merite. However, in the past decade and a half we do not know of any model made in steel by the famed Saxon brand, making the existence of the present 1815 "Homage to Walter Lange" an exception in all senses.

    The present timepiece is luring and seductive thanks not only to the complex mechanism collectors and enthusiasts have come to expect from A. Lange & Söhne as well as its serene black enamel dial, but also what it represents: a tribute to a man who participated in bringing Saxon and German watchmaking back and a genuine scholar and gentleman.

    The proceeds of the sale of the present unique chronograph will be donated to the Children Action Foundation, a charity committed to the physical and mental well-being of disadvantaged children and young people around the world. To date, more than 80,000 children have directly benefited from one of its projects. The motto of the foundation, that was set up in 1994 by the Swiss businessman Bernard Sabrier, is “Every child has a right to childhood”.

    Additional information regarding this unique piece and Walter Lange's legacy is available at A. Lange & Söhne's website here.

  • Artist Biography

    A. Lange & Söhne

    German • 1845

    Originally founded in 1845 by Ferdinand Adolph Lange in Glashütte, Dresden, Germany, the firm established an entire watchmaking culture and industry in Glashütte. The brand quickly became Germany's finest watchmaker, first creating dependable, easy-to-repair watches before going on to produce some of the world's finest complicated pocket watches, including Grande Sonnerie watches, tourbillon watches and Grande Complications.

    On the final day of World War II, their factories were destroyed by Russian bombers, and in 1948 the brand was confiscated by the Soviet Union. Following the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1990, Ferdinand's great grandson Walter Lange re-established the brand with the objective to once again produce top-quality luxury watches. Now part of the Richemont Group, its original vintage and modern creations are highly coveted by collectors. Key models from the modern era include the Lange 1, Pour Le Mérite Tourbillon and the Zeitwerk.

    View More Works


Lot offered with No Reserve

Ref. 297.078
A unique and highly attractive stainless steel wristwatch with independently stoppable jumping center seconds and black enamel dial

40.5mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and buckle signed

Estimate On Request •

Sold for CHF852,500

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
Head of Sale
+41 22 317 81 81

The Geneva Watch Auction: SEVEN

Geneva Auction 12-13 May 2018