The Watch: A Twentieth-Century Style History – Alexander Barter
This new 2023 edition of ‘The Watch: A Twentieth-Century Style History’ sees the original book repackaged in a great value hard back edition. Discover the stylistic evolution of the watch in the 20th century. This book, written by Black Bough’s very own Alex Barter, takes the reader through the 20th century to show how the watch, in all its forms, evolved. It charts the early rise of the wristwatch, shows how the cataclysmic events of the Wall Street Crash unexpectedly led to a golden age of watch production, and demonstrates how the electronic watch, which almost destroyed the traditional industry, led to a mechanical watch renaissance in the last two decades of the century. Each decade opens with an introduction to the era’s stylistic and design highlights, then follows several detailed sub sections devoted to the development of specific genres within each period. Hundreds of colour photographs include full page close ups that reveal intricate details of form, texture and design.
“Alexander Barter’s new book, The Watch, is the antidote to decades of watch publishing mediocrity.” Robin Swithinbank in Robb Report Online
“a superb new book you’ll want both for yourself and to present to a fellow watch lover…serves both the newbie and the seasoned enthusiast…a book you’ll leave on coffee-table or bedside for constant referral…in addition to being of impossibly high print quality, is also a bargain at a mere £45″ – Revolution Magazine online
“a 100-year stretch of horological hyperactivity that Alexander Barter details definitively and beautifully” – City A.M.
“This is one hell of a classy way to learn watch history – more than a visual treat, author Alexander Barter backs up the horological eye candy with insight and substantive context” – Gear Patrol
“meticulously curated examples and sumptuous vintage ads, all accompanied by concise prose” – QP Magazine
“a must for any horophile” – The Jackal
Alex spent more than a decade at Sotheby’s watch division, becoming its Deputy Worldwide Head in 2005. In 2009 he co-founded Black Bough with Adam Withington. Alex’s extensive knowledge of the 20th century watch informs his texts which discusses the major technological and design breakthroughs in a chronological format. This book also includes vintage advertisements and other promotional materials, helping to give a sense of the eras in which they were created. It explores the watch as a museum-worthy art object – festooned in fine jewels or designed to the limits of abstraction – and as an important tool for scientists, navigators, astronauts, and athletes. The perfect gift for watch aficionados, this beautiful, informative volume presents the world’s finest watches with an elegance and depth befitting its subject.
The Chairman of Sotheby’s International Watch Division, Daryn Schnipper, one of the world’s leading experts in the field of watches, has written the book’s foreword.
Published by Prestel in September 2023
Hardback, 336 pages
Over 450 colour photographs
Approx. 82,000 words
24cm x 30cm x 3.2cm