F.P. Journe - RETROSPECTIVE: 2000 - 2020 Geneva Sunday, November 8, 2020 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: F.P. Journe
    Year: 2008
    Movement No: Movement engraved Gabrielle
    Case No: Case engraved Gabrielle
    Model Name: Sonnerie Souverain
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Manual, cal. 1505, 40 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: F.P. Journe stainless steel bracelet, max length 190mm, further accompanied by a leather strap
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel F.P. Journe deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 42mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by a large F.P. Journe fitted box, loupe, polishing cloth, Certificate, extra components, pin buckle, deployant clasp and user manual
    Literature: François-Paul Journe : Sonnerie Souveraine – Grande Sonnerie by Jean-Claude Sabrer and Vincent Daveau is dedicated to this masterpiece

  • Catalogue Essay

    For both collectors and watchmakers chiming watches have always constituted a grail, the horological Himalaya being the Grand and Petite Sonnerie.

    A Grande Sonnerie is a timepiece that automatically chimes the hours on every hour and hours and quarters on every quarter when on petite sonnerie mode the watch will only chime the passing of the quarters.
    Not a watchmaker to shy away from a challenge Journe decided to climb his own Himalaya a year after he launched his brand and create his own sonnerie.

    6 years and 10 patents later, the Sonnerie Souverain was presented in 2006 and was in production until 2019.

    Journe states that he developed the movement keeping in mind that it should me made safe to use by an eight year old, meaning not only the watch should be easy to use but also overcome the delicacies of this type of complication hat could easily break if used improperly.

    The result is an incredibly easy to use and fool proof complication. In signature F.P. Journe style time is indicated on offset dials on the left, the repeating gongs can be seen via an aperture on the dial. The power reserve is indicated at 12 o’clock. The sonnerie selection is made via the button at 4 o’clock and displayed on the lower portion of the dial: G (Grande sonnerie), S (silence), P (Petite sonnerie). The button located at 2 o’clock activates the minute repeater.

    The greatest difficulty in constructing a sonnerie is to achieve full clockwatch capability from limited energy in a wristwatch without compromising the sound and reliability of the chime. In the Sonnerie Souverain, a single mainspring provides energy for 24 hours for the Grande sonnerie, the chiming functions use up close to 60% of the mainspring’s energy. In silence mode, the movement runs for 5 days.

    The 408 component movement is housed in a steel case (a first for Journe at the time), a metal that amplifies the sound of the chimes and won the Aiguille d’Or (highest distinction) at the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Geneve (the watchmaking equivalent of the Oscars) in 2006.

    One of the most incredible masterpieces to leave the Journe ateliers, less than four were made per year and each had the name of the owner engraved on the caseback and on the movement bridge, here Gabrielle.

    With the Souverain Journe is one of the very rare makers of this extraordinary complex mechanism and a must have for the collector of horological grails.

  • Artist Biography

    F.P. Journe

    Swiss • 1999

    Founded by watchmaker François-Paul Journe in 1999, the F.P. Journe brand is relatively young, but already is as highly regarded by collectors as many distinguished manufacturers with centuries-old heritage. In the minds of the world's savviest collectors, Journe is producing some of the finest wristwatches the market has ever seen. Mastering his craft from restoring historical timepieces, he was the first to create a wristwatch incorporating two escapements that benefit from the phenomenon of resonance — the Chronomètre à Résonance.

    Key models include the Résonance, tourbillon wristwatches incorporating a remontoir and the limited edition Vagabondage series. Especially sought-after are his earliest "souscription" watches, made in 1999.

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A spectacular and rare minute repeating grande and petite sonnerie stainless steel wristwatch with power reserve, bracelet, box and guarantee

42mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

CHF300,000 - 600,000 

Sold for CHF680,400

Contact Specialist

Alexandre Ghotbi
Head of Watches, Continental Europe and the Middle East

41 79 637 1724


Thomas Perazzi

Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2031


RETROSPECTIVE: 2000 - 2020

Geneva Auction 8 November 2020