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  • Manufacturer: Cartier
    Year: Circa 1929
    Case No: HSA 1221 and Cartier hand stamped numbers 22109 3700 27321
    Model Name: Tank Cintrée
    Material: Platinum
    Calibre: Manual, 19 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: 18K white gold folding deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 21mm. Width and 36mm. Length
    Signed: Dial signed, case further stamped with Cartier hand stamped numbers, movement signed European Watch Clock and Co.

  • Catalogue Essay

    With the introduction of the Tank wristwatch in 1917, Cartier also produced variants of the model, playing on the proportions of the bezel, case shape and dial configuration.

    One variant of the tank is the Cintrée, aptly named after its striking curved rectangular case. Launched in 1921, the Cintrée was an incredibly fresh take on the rectangular shape and dimensions of the Cartier Tank wristwatch. Today, the Tank Cintrée is incredibly popular, having inspired modern successors in the ‘Collection Privée, Cartier Paris’ series.

    This particular example is very striking. The dial features Roman numerals, which were designed on the earliest Tank Cintrées, and the watch retains its original Breguet-style hands. Cased in platinum, the most precious of all metals, this watch features strong hallmarks to the band, along with legible reference numbers and Cartier hand stamped numbers throughout. Most interesting is the "HSA" engraving on the case back, which research shows is a mark denoting the watch was inspected and documented by Cartier. The movement is signed European Watch Clock and Co, which is correct for Cartier Paris wristwatches.

  • Maker Bio

    Cartier

    French

    With the Constitution of 1848 came a new standard for luxury in France. Founded one year prior by Louis-Francois Cartier, the house of Cartier was one of the first to use platinum in jewelry making. This incredibly expensive material became the stepping-stone for Cartier to experiment in form, mechanisms and attitude. It helped men move from pocket watches to wristwatches, effectively making the watch much more functional and prominent in a man's overall wardrobe.

    Cartier did not only touch on functionality. Inspired by a commissioned painting by George Barbier featuring a black panther at the feet of an elegantly bejeweled woman, Cartier began incorporating wild animals in his designs—most notably, Cartier Panthère rings, bangle bracelets and watches. Yet it wasn't until the late 1960s that the house of Cartier debuted their iconic yellow and rose gold LOVE collection, which includes the famous bracelet that only a special screwdriver can open. 

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Widely known as the “jeweler of kings and the king of jewelers”, Cartier was established in 1847 and has an incredibly rich history with wristwatches. In 1904, Cartier created the world’s first wristwatch that incorporated integrated lugs, for the renowned aviator Alberto Santos Dumont. Soon to follow was arguably the firm’s most iconic design, the Tank – immediately recognizable by its elegant, elongated rectangular shape. Designed by Louis Cartier in 1917 near the end of World War I, the Tank was inspired by the top view of the very first Renault military tank vehicle deployed that same year, hence its charismatic name, “The Tank”. Legend has it that early Tank Watches were offered by Cartier to General John Pershing of the American Expeditionary Force and his officers. Characterized by its balanced proportions and beautiful symmetry, the Tank has remained a classic since its inception. To this day, it is an important product line for Cartier. The brilliantly designed cases combine sensual curves and straight lines, and feature two vertical sidebars known as “brancards”. Very fine screws secure their case and straps – an aesthetically pleasing detail that is also highly functional. Epitomizing the elegance, the Tank’s dial is timeless, most often featuring empire-style roman numerals, a “chemin-de-fer” chapter ring for the minutes, and blued-steel hour and minute hands. In a fitting nod to Cartier's prestigious jeweler roots, the sapphire-capped winding crowns often complement the blued-steel hands. Early examples were fitted with movements signed European Watch and Clock Company - exquisitely finished movements made exclusively for Cartier by Edmond Jaeger in partnership with the watchmaking firm LeCoultre. Adored by many public figures and celebrities throughout its history, the tank has adorned on the wrists of both men and women including Cary Grant, Frank Sinatra, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Andy Warhol, Calvin Klein, Yves Saint Laurent, Alain Prost, Ralph Lauren, and The Maharajah of Patiala, just to name a few. For further reading on the history of the Cartier Tank, we recommend reading “Cartier The Tank Watch” by Franco Cologni.

Cartier

A fine and extremely rare curved platinum wristwatch with movement by European Watch Clock and Co

Circa 1929
21mm. Width and 36mm. Length
Dial signed, case further stamped with Cartier hand stamped numbers, movement signed European Watch Clock and Co.

Estimate
CHF20,000 - 30,000 
€18,500-27,800
$19,800-29,700

sold for CHF25,000

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
+41 22 317 81 89

The Geneva Watch Auction: FIVE

Geneva Auctions 13 – 14 May 2017