Made in the spirit of 18th-century masters, the creations of the founder of the brand, Francois-Paul Journe, appeals not only to vintage collectors, but also to connoisseurs of modern watches
In 1976, François-Paul Journe, born in Marseille, France, graduated from the Paris watchmaking school and began working at his uncle’s watchmaking studio. In 1982, Journe created his first tourbillon chronometer, which took him 5 years to develop.
In 1985, Journe opened his workshop, where he restored and made bespoke watches for collectors. Journe then decided to create models not only for collectors, but also for the wider public.
In 1999, he launched the first F.P. Journe collection, called Invenit et Fecit (Latin for “invented and made”), and also founded Montres Journe SA. In 2000, Journe opened a manufacture and a showroom in the center of Geneva. The uniqueness of the Journe’s watch manufacturing lies in the fact that the complete assembly of one timepiece is carried out by one single master watchmaker and in the future, the same master also provides the servicing. 90% of the components are produced at Journe’s own manufacture, except for the balance springs, rubies, mainsprings and a few other details.
In 2004, he released the Chronomètre Souverain, with entire movement created out of 18k gold.
Movements of his watches are still entirely made of rose gold – a unique phenomenon in the industry.
In his work, François-Paul Journe is inspired by the craftsmanship of 18th-century watchmakers, considering this time to be the golden era of watchmaking. Honoring the traditions of the masters of that time and at the same time following modern trends, Journe is the owner of numerous awards in the field of watchmaking. In particular, he received the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève award on no less than 7 occasions, including 3 Aiguille d'Or (Golden Hand) prizes for the Tourbillon Souveraine in 2004, the Sonnerie Souveraine in 2006, and the Centrigraphe Souveraine in 2008.
He owns many patents for inventions, and the movements of his watches are still entirely made of rose gold (while the lineSport sports collection is made of aluminum) – a unique phenomenon in the industry.
Despite the small annual production volume (about 900 watches), Journ owns a 50 percent stake in the “Les Cadraniers de Genève” dial-making atelier (the other half is owned by Vacheron Constantin). Since the autumn of 2018, Chanel has been participating in the capital of Montres Journe SA itself: it owns a minority stake (about 20%) of the brand.
The words "Invenit et Fecit" chosen as the company's motto testify to the unique approach of the master to the design and creation of his watches. The annual release of one or two unique calibers is a real feat in watchmaking. Never satisfied with what has been achieved, François-Paul Journe continues to generate new ideas to this day and does not hesitate to stop producing a model, even if it is in great demand among customers. For him, this is the only way to quench his thirst for creativity and offer his fans even more exclusive watches.
Auction 2023 lot:
Phone: +41 22 322 09 09