Press | Phillips

15 March 2022

Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo Reveals Highlights from The Royal Oak 50th

Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo Reveals

Highlights from The Royal Oak 50th

 

A Sale Dedicated to the 50th Anniversary of Audemars Piguet’s Iconic Model

 

To be Held in Geneva on 6 May 2022

 

Featuring a Historically Important Reference 5402ST Bearing Number A2, the Earliest Known Reference 5402 to Come to the Auction Market

 

 

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak, reference 5402ST A2

Estimate: CHF 200,000-400,000

 

GENEVA - 15 March 2022 - Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo is delighted to announce “The Royal Oak 50th”, a thematic sale dedicated to the 50th anniversary of one of horology’s most iconic watches: Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oak. The auction will be held on 6 May, 2022 at the Hôtel La Réserve in Geneva.

 

Launched in 1972 at Basel Fair, Audemars Piguet's introduction of the Royal Oak marked the beginning of the luxury sports watch market as we know it today, causing an immediate sensation as the watch industry had never seen anything comparable before. The Royal Oak is widely considered one of the most important and relevant watches in horological history - it invented a genre, there was a before and an after. This tightly curated sale will offer 88 of the finest, rarest and best-preserved Royal Oak wristwatches known to exist.

 

Alexandre Ghotbi, Head of Watches, Continental Europe & Middle East, and Virginie Liatard Roessli, Watch Specialist and Head of Sale, commented: This tightly curated sale will give a glimpse into the complex and diverse world of this horological icon. We can see how, with one single reference the 5402 from 1972, Audemars Piguet created not only a genre but also a design language that it then immediately started developing, experimenting with sizes, complications and metals. To the best of our knowledge, never have we seen or heard of such an assembly of so many historically important, rare and, in some cases, unique Royal Oak models gathered in one place or shown to the public. We are honored to be part of the 50th anniversary of the Royal Oak and would like to thank the teams at Audemars Piguet’s archives department for their support.”   

 

Highlights

 

Ref 5402ST A2

We are delighted to offer the earliest number reference 5402 to ever appear at auction as it bears the number A2, making it the second Royal Oak ever made! Adding an extra element of historical relevance is the fact that this watch was one of the four Royal Oak models presented to the press and public at the opening of the Basel watch fair in 1972. The watch is furthermore complete with its full set of accessories and remains unworn.

Estimate CHF 200,000-400,000

 

Ref 5402ST – Karl Lagerfeld Black PVD coated “A series”

Phillips is delighted to offer an icon that was most probably worn by an icon: Karl Lagerfeld’s black PVD coated reference 5402. Lagerfeld was a German creative director, fashion designer, artist, and photographer mainly known for his work at the helm of fashion powerhouses Chanel and Fendi. Lagerfeld was often seen wearing black PVD Royal Oak models of different sizes which he would then gift to friends and collaborators. Considering the provenance of the piece - bought in Italy in early 1974 when Lagerfeld was living there - it came back to the market in 1995 and remained in the same collection for over two decades. There are period photos showing Lagerfeld wearing a black PVD Ref 5402. The place of delivery of the watch and amount of wear lead Phillips’ watch specialists to believe that this watch had been the property of Lagerfeld.

 

 

Ref 5402ST – Karl Lagerfeld Black PVD coated “A series”

Estimate CHF 100,000-200,000

 

Ref 25831ST Tourbillon in Stainless steel

Made in 1997, this reference was made in celebration of the Royal Oak’s 25th anniversary and featured for the first time a tourbillon. It was made in only 25 pieces of which the present example bears number 1.

Estimate CHF 120,000-240,000

 

 

Ref 25865ST Grande Complication

This impressive Royal Oak in stainless steel is a Grande Complication in the truest of horological sense as it elegantly brings together three extremely difficult complications to master: a minute repeater, a perpetual calendar and a split seconds chronograph. It is a unique piece.

Estimate CHF 250,000-500,000

 

Ref 25990BC Grande Complication

The second Grande Complication in our sale is also a unique piece. It is not only a technical marvel bringing together a minute repeater, a perpetual calendar and a split seconds chronograph, but its white gold case is lavishly set with diamonds as is its dial that features visually arresting mother of pearl subdials.

Estimate CHF 250,000-500,000

 

 

Ref 25831ST Tourbillon in Stainless steel

Estimate CHF 120,000-240,000

 

Ref 25865ST Grande Complication

Estimate CHF 250,000-500,000

 

Ref 25990BC Grande Complication

Estimate CHF 250,000-500

 

Ref 25636PT Openwork Perpetual Calendar in platinum

This perpetual calendar in full platinum is one of the earliest variants to feature an openwork dial exposing the magical wonders of the perpetual calendar mechanism. Featuring rare midnight blue subdials, the model does not feature a leap year indicator. Only 41 pieces in platinum were made.

Estimate CHF 200,000-400,000

 

Ref 25829TP Openwork Perpetual Calendar in platinum and tantalum

One of only 16 pieces made, this timepiece features a mix of metals rarely seen in watchmaking. The matt sheen of platinum with the bluish/grey hues of the tantalum provides a fully captivating look.

Estimate CHF 120,000-240,000

 

Ref 14802PT Jubilee in platinum

Launched for the Royal Oak’s 20th anniversary in 1992, ref 14802 was available in an ultra-exclusive 20-piece edition in platinum, amongst which a very low number featured the beautiful blue “Tuscan” dial, like the one seen in this example.

Estimate CHF 250,000-500,000

 

Ref 25636PT Openwork Perpetual Calendar in platinum

Estimate CHF 200,000-400,000

Ref 25829TP Openwork Perpetual Calendar in platinum and tantalum

Estimate CHF 120,000-240,000

Ref 14802PT Jubilee in platinum

Estimate CHF 250,000-500,000

 

 

Auction

The Royal Oak 50th: 6 May 2022, 2pm

Location : Hôtel La Réserve, Bellevue, Geneva

 

 

Auction Viewing

 

United States:

New-York 24-28 March

Location: Phillips New York Office, 432 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10022

 

Asia:

Taipei 31 March - 3 April

Location: Phillips at Art Roastery x Louisa Coffee No. 95, Section 5, Xinyi Road, Xinyi District, Taipei City

 

Singapore 7-9 April

Location:  St. Regis Hotel, 29 Tanglin Rd - Singapore 247911

 

Europe:

London 21-24 April

Location: Phillips’ HQ, 30 Berkeley Square, London Geneva

 

Geneva: 4-8 May

Location: Hôtel La Réserve, Bellevue, Geneva

 

 

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ABOUT PHILLIPS IN ASSOCIATION WITH BACS & RUSSO

The team of specialists at Phillips Watches is dedicated to an uncompromised approach to quality, transparency, and client service, achieving a global auction sale total of $209.3 million in 2021, the most successful year for any auction house in watch auction history.

 

A selection of our record-breaking prices:

 

1. Paul Newman’s Rolex “Paul Newman” Daytona reference 6239 (CHF 17,709,894 / US$17,752,500) – New York Auction: Winning Icons – 26 October 2017 – Highest result ever achieved for any vintage wristwatch at auction.

 

2. Patek Philippe reference 1518 in stainless steel (CHF 11,020,000 / US$11,112,020) – Geneva Watch Auction: FOUR – 12 November 2016 – Highest result ever achieved for a vintage Patek Philippe wristwatch at auction.

 

ABOUT PHILLIPS

Phillips is a leading global platform for buying and selling 20th and 21st century art and design. With dedicated expertise in the areas of 20th Century and Contemporary Art, Design, Photographs, Editions, Watches, and Jewelry, Phillips offers professional services and advice on all aspects of collecting. Auctions and exhibitions are held at salerooms in New York, London, Geneva, and Hong Kong, while clients are further served through representative offices based throughout Europe, the United States and Asia. Phillips also offers an online auction platform accessible anywhere in the world.  In addition to providing selling and buying opportunities through auction, Phillips brokers private sales and offers assistance with appraisals, valuations, and other financial services.

 

*Estimates do not include buyer’s premium; prices achieved include the hammer price plus buyer’s premium.

 

PRESS CONTACTS:            

GENEVA - Asta Ponzo, PR Consultant                        [email protected]                   +41 79 961 85 66

LONDON - Katie Carder, Head of Press, Europe              [email protected]                         

 

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