Create your first list.

A way to share and manage lots.

  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1958
    Reference No: 6542
    Movement No: 819'638
    Case No: 398'058
    Model Name: GMT-Master "Pussy Galore"
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1030, 25 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Jubilee bracelet stamped "55" to the endlinks, max length 195mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex deployant clasp stamped 1.58
    Dimensions: 39mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and clasp signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by additional stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet stamped "80" to the endlinks and "4 68" to the clasp and product literature.

  • Catalogue Essay

    First released in 1954, the GMT-Master reference 6542 was designed for pilots to use in their line of work. With the rise of international travel in the 1940s and 1950s, Rolex initially created the model for Pan Am airlines to track dual time zones. This ingenious design featured an immediately recognizable bakelite bezel with the twenty-four hour numerals painted on the underside, made to glow in any weather condition. Bakelite was Rolex's material of choice, due to its low reflectivity and high readability. The additional luminous 24 hour tipped hand allowed the viewer to immediately track a second time zone.

    Given that the GMT-Master was created for specific, work-related purposes, most examples were cased in stainless steel. These watches were worn in the most practical sense and made to withstand the elements. Thus, it is incredibly rare to find watches in original condition, like the present example with their original bakelite insert.

    This example is of course distinguished by its incredible "tropical" dial. Preserved in remarkable condition, the zapon finish of the dial is absolutely free of scratches, having aged only with the typical micro-bubbling and micro-fissuring seen on Rolex dial of this age - in this instance however these effects are so subtle that they can only be noticed with a strong loupe and indirect light.

    The star of the watch is however the black dial plate which has aged to an enormously charming degradé tropical brown, ranging from a lighter tobacco tone in the top left area of the dial, to an intense dark chocolate in the bottom right area of the dial. It is possible, given its geometry, that such an unusual topicalization is the result of the watch being worn on a right wrist.

  • Artist Biography

    Rolex

    Swiss • 1905

    Founded in 1905 England by Hans Wilsdorf and Alfred Davis as Wilsdorf & Davis, it soon became known as the Rolex Watch Company in 1915, moving its headquarters to Geneva in 1919. Like no other company, the success of the wristwatch can be attributed to many of Rolex's innovations that made them one of the most respected and well-known of all luxury brands. These innovations include their famous "Oyster" case — the world's first water resistant and dustproof watch case, invented in 1926 — and their "Perpetual" — the first reliable self-winding movement for wristwatches launched in 1933. They would form the foundation for Rolex's Datejust and Day-Date, respectively introduced in 1945 and 1956, but also importantly for their sports watches, such as the Explorer, Submariner and GMT-Master launched in the mid-1950s.

    One of its most famous models is the Cosmograph Daytona. Launched in 1963, these chronographs are without any doubt amongst the most iconic and coveted of all collectible wristwatches. Other key collectible models include their most complicated vintage watches, including references 8171 and 6062 with triple calendar and moon phase, "Jean Claude Killy" triple date chronograph models and the Submariner, including early "big-crown" models and military-issued variants.

    View More Works

183

Ref. 6542
An extremely rare and highly attractive stainless steel dual time automatic wristwatch with center seconds, date, bakelite bezel, tropical dial and bracelet

Circa 1958
39mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and clasp signed

Estimate
CHF50,000 - 100,000 
€45,300-90,700
$54,400-109,000

Sold for CHF78,120

Contact Specialist

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

41 79 637 1724
[email protected]

 

 

The Geneva Watch Auction: XIII

Geneva Auction 8 - 9 May 2021