Rolex - The New York Watch Auction: SEVEN New York Saturday, December 10, 2022 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1980s
    Reference No: 19000
    Movement No: 0’089’468
    Model Name: Stainless Steel Day-Date Oysterquartz "L’École d’Horologerie de Genève"
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Quartz, cal. 5035, 11 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet, reference 17000B, max length 220mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex deployant clasp, reference 170000B, stamped R2
    Dimensions: 36mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, movement, dial, and bracelet signed Rolex. Case additionally stamped “École d’Horologie de Genève”.

  • Catalogue Essay

    The oldest watchmaking school in Switzerland, L’École d’Horologerie de Genève, was first established in 1824 and headquartered in Petit-Lancy right outside of the city center of Geneva.

    Rolex brought in its first class of watchmaking apprentices in 1984, but before that, research shows that the manufacture sometimes donated watches to watchmaking schools for future watchmakers to use as practice, much like other brands at the time. Interestingly, Rolex chose to donate their reference 19000 Oysterquartz Day-Date, powered by the quartz movement caliber 5035. Even more surprisingly, Rolex cased these donated watches in stainless steel unlike any other reference 19000. In all likelihood, the students at L’École d’Horologerie de Genève needed practice working on complicated quartz movements that were barreling into fashion at the time since the late 1970s, and steel was chosen for cost purposes.

    School watches are highly sought after by collectors as a window into the past, or the incongruity of seeing the engraved name of a young watchmaker on the movement of an otherwise familiar reference. The present lot is the fourth appearance of a Rolex OysterQuartz school watch at auction, with the characteristic engraving “L’École d’Horologerie de Genève” on the caseback, a subtle wink of rarity to those who are in the know.

  • Artist Biography


    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.

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Ref. 19000
An extraordinarily rare and well-preserved stainless steel quartz wristwatch with day, date, and bracelet, engraved “L’École d’Horologerie de Genève” on the caseback

Circa 1980s
36mm Diameter
Case, movement, dial, and bracelet signed Rolex. Case additionally stamped “École d’Horologie de Genève”.

$12,000 - 24,000 

Sold for $44,100

Contact Specialist

Paul Boutros

Head of Watches, Americas

+1 (212) 940-1293


Isabella Proia

Head of Sale, New York

+1 (212) 940 1285


The New York Watch Auction: SEVEN

New York Auction 10 - 11 December 2022