In 2009, MB&F had called on Alain Silberstein to create its very first piece of “Performance Art”-reinterpretations by external artists and designers of existing MB&F Machines. For this new Performance Art series, Silberstein has taken MB&F’s classic Legacy Machine No. 1 and imbued it with his unique flair for the unconventional. The use of his three signature colors red, blue and yellow mixed with the shapes triangle, rectangle and circle catch the eye as they contrast against the more subdued movement plate below.
Alain Silberstein had one overriding aim in his version of creating a “Performance Art” edition of the Legacy Machine No. 1: to welcome the “eternal time” of the universe into the movement, where it would be transformed into time on a more human scale. To realise this, he envisaged concave subdials to catch “eternal time”, rather than the convex subdials of the original LM1. He also envisaged replacing the original dual arches of LM1’s balance bridge with a single, transparent bridge, allowing full visual access to the time indications and dial-side escapement.
The three primary colors are found on the subdials – red and blue hands, yellow index markers – are echoed in the three shapes – cone, cube and sphere – of the three-dimensional, vertical power reserve indicator. When reading the time, the hour is generally the first bit of information required. So the hour hands are of a brighter color – red – on a larger surface area – triangle – than the thinner blue minute hands. The hands are not only brightly colored but also high gloss, while the underlying dials and movement plates feature more subdued colors with matte finishes. A special feature of the MB&F Legacy Machine No.1 movement is the ability to set the two time zones completely independent. Since the twin dials are controlled by the same regulator, the two times stay perfectly synchronised with each other, once they are set.
The crown at 8 o’clock is for setting the time on the left dial, the crown at 4 o’clock is for setting the time of the right dial and additionally it winds the watch. The LM1 is equipped with the world’s first vertical power reserve indicator. When fully wound, the calibre provides a power reserve of approximately 45 hours.
The ingenious three-dimensional movement is arranged around the balance wheel, which is placed up front, floating in the middle of the dial. The balance wheel measures 14 mm in diameter and oscillates – mimicking antique pocket watches – with 18.000 bph compared with the 28.800 bph common today.
Acclaimed master watchmaker Kari Voutilainen assumed responsibility for ensuring the historical accuracy of the style and finishing of the MB&F Legacy Machine N°1 movement. A sapphire crystal window ensures, that his work can be overseen.
The case is water-resistant up to 3 atm; it comes on a black leather strap.
The LM1 Silberstein is available in red gold, titanium and titanium with black PVD coating, in a limited edition of 12 specimens each. Every version measures 42,5 mm in diameter and 17 mm in height.