The design language of Franck Muller, like that of art, is up to interpretation; a Franck Muller watch is a canvas on which the watchmaker displays its joie de vivre and mastery of craft. To put it simply, when the Swiss watchmaker reveals a new design, the world of horology stands up and takes notice. This design language is excellently demonstrated by the Vanguard Skeleton Color Dreams, which are currently available exclusively in Southeast Asia. The eight colors from the legendary Franck Muller Color Dreams collection are included, and are available in a trio of various versions for this edition. It’s as if psychedelia came to life in a clock.
The watch appears sophisticated at first glance. The vibrant colors, crisscross bridges, and apparent movement beneath provide a feeling of intricacy. However, these complicated parts reach a level of simplicity. These are iconic Franck Muller aesthetic accents that have been developed from the ground up for this year’s Color Dreams line. The Vanguard Skeleton Color Dreams, which was created as a skeleton watch from the start, displays the movement from both sides of the watch (via the exhibition caseback).
The movement’s satin-finished, anodized aluminum bridges are fastened directly to the inner case, which has been cut exactly to match the curved casing, displaying the manually wound mechanical movement inside. These plates and bridges are colored in distinctive colours using electrolytic anodisation, which necessitates the specific fabrication of components in aluminium rather than the typical brass or nickel silver.
It should be emphasized that each component must be handled independently to obtain the many colors seen here, which is impressive. Skeletonisation has the effect of relegating the minute digits to the flange, with the hallmark large numerals completely removed in the Vanguard Skeleton Color Dreams. The hour and minute hands, which are in different colors, are working double-time to maintain readability. Running seconds are also shown by a different colored hand in a subdial with a yellow track at 6 o’clock.
The new V 43 case is 42.50mm [W] x 52.70mm [L] x 12.60mm [T]
This mechanical marvel is housed in the new, lightweight V 43 casing, which is constructed of CarboTech, a synthesised carbon fiber material. There’s also the added bonus that no two Vanguard Skeleton Color Dreams are the same. The striations formed by the compression of the carbon fiber on each component result in unique designs on each timepiece. Each case is hand-buffed, which adds a touch of classic watchmaking beauty.
To summarize, the Vanguard Skeleton Color Dreams is the most recent addition to a series that is intimately linked to Franck Muller. Color Dreams’ initial watches were formed from the brand’s interests, which were based in the founder’s obsessions and collided in a rush of creation. The Color Dreams watch served as a blank canvas for a rainbow display accented by characteristic big hour markers, inspiring a variety of imaginative interpretations. It was always about enjoying time, and the Vanguard Skeleton Color Dreams is possibly the finest representation of that philosophy in watchmaking.