Bell & Ross Watches’ Subtle Boxiness Wows

Bell and Ross Watch

This past weekend, The New York Times had an advertising supplemental that was a slick magazine devoted to the watch, a dying breed of product design. Probably my favorite of the watches was the Bell & Ross BR01-97. It is, quite frankly, one of the ugliest watches I have ever seen, but there is no denying its incredible precision and craftsmanship. I guess the reason I love this watch so much is it really sticks to its 4 tenets: water resistance, readability, precision, and performance. No where do they claim to focus on beauty. These 4 things are the mantra. Designers, engineers, and fabricators look to this with laser focus. Beauty is not in this equation. It’s too abstract. And like many Swiss modernists that have come before Bell and Ross, the beauty is the product of following these four tenets.

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