Projects Watches are wearable art for the wrist
Designed as wearable art for the wrist, Pockets Watches were initially created 30 years ago by famed designer Michael Graves to be “tokens of creative expression and a symbol of how art can be experienced as part of the everyday experience … that art should be intertwined with everyday life,” according to its website.
“Artistic expression and the celebration of creation should never be limited to a museum, gallery or your Instagram feed … Art should have the ability to inspire you on a daily basis, in unique and powerful ways.”
Since then, the watches have been featured in museums and shops around the world, and the designers have received the highest awards and recognition in their field.
The unique timepieces are now available at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art Museum Store at 1130 State St.
“One of them caught my eye at a trade show in New York City. The watch, which is called ‘Diagram 17,’ is designed by Denis Guidone, who was inspired by a drawing of the same name by Wassily Kandinsky, whose artwork is in the museum’s permanent collection,” said Nicole Meuse, head of retail buying and operations for the store.
“I was fascinated that the watches combine a little bit of art history with a whole lot of style.”
The watch is one of 12 designs at the museum store, each with a special name and unique back story.
“Past, Present & Future,” in designer Daniel Will-Harris’s collection, reminds one that there’s no time quite like the present. The key emphasis is on the now, while all things past and present appear in the distance..
“Toot Sweet,” also by Mr. Will-Harris, draws inspiration from the phrase, ‘tout de suite,’ which means ‘right now’ in French. Featuring a bold color scheme of yellows, greens and shades of blue, this abstract composition puts less focus on telling time and more on personal style.
“ ‘Till” focuses on the relationship between now and then. With ‘Till, it’s not “12:50,” it’s “ten ’till 1,” changing the way one sees time from a cyclical format to a more linear approach. Mr. Will-Harris is the designer.
“Vertere,” by designer Moshe Safdie, features three minimalist shapes — one red and one blue circle and a straight yellow line in its center — moving atop a black and white pattern.
“Terra-Time Gray” is an “earthwork on your wrist,” composed of six layers, each representing the layers of the earth. Designed by James Wines’s firm SITE, it has references from contour maps, topographical models, stone quarry excavations and agricultural terras.
“Best sellers are the ‘Pride’ and ‘Pride Prism’ designed by architect Alex Donahue,” Mrs. Meuse told the News-Press. “They are dedicated to individuals who bravely stood for the rights of all people. These timepieces feature six individual colors that twice a day — noon and midnight — come together to create the shape of a rainbow.
“With 5% of all profits from ‘Pride’ sales donated to True Colors United to support innovative solutions to youth homelessness and LGBTQ issues, this is one significant way to show your pride and support individually.”
Prices range from $42 to $194.
“The watches are real show stoppers. They are one-of-a-kind works of art on the wrist. Everyone comments on them. They are intrigued by them,” said Mrs. Meuse. “I’ll be carrying the collection for a long time because it is in line with the museum’s branding, values and art history appreciation.”