2018 Revolution Round-Up: HYTBy Joy Corthesy
No watchmaking brand embodies the concept of “past, present, and future” in their pieces as well as HYT does today. Inspired by ancient Egyptian water clocks, or clepsydras, where time was measured by the flow of water from one container into another, HYT drew up the first plans to incorporate water into their watches. Watchmakers spent decades of research to find the best ways to keep water and moisture out of watches, and here comes HYT, strolling in, creating pieces that not only welcome water, but use it in the mechanism in a futuristic design that’s frankly unrivalled in the industry. Now, HYT has seven collections, all featuring some form of the liquid mechanism to tell time. Since its introduction of the system in 2012, HYT has continued creating new pieces and variations, all based on the same principle of measuring time with water.
All New H20
During the 2018 Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie, nestled in the Carré des Horlogers where the Salon showcases independent watchmakers, HYT launched its all-new H20 collection, the next logical step for the brand — after all, why stretch its resources thin trying to make something else when it does these liquid timepieces so well?
The H20 collection debuted in January 2018 with two limited edition pieces, one in black with a bright green fluid and the other silver with a deep blue liquid. The movement, exclusive to HYT, remained largely the same, but the dial design was revamped from the H0 collection. The curved, cloche-like sapphire crystal offers a complete side view of the watch, and the dial has essentially been opened up. It looks almost skeletonized, with the movement on full display on the dial, screws, bellows, wheels and all. The numbers for the hours stand upright on the side of the case, fully visible with the sapphire cloche, and the brightly dyed liquid moves along a curved tube around the dial to indicate the minutes.
At the launch event in Geneva for the H20 Brown Limited Edition this fall, HYT’s CEO Grégory Dourde explained that the H20 was designed with a similar mindset to that of an artist with a sculpture; the idea was to create a piece that would allow its owners to travel inside and admire every perspective it offers.
Like the Skull or the H0 when they were first unveiled, HYT presented, with the H20 collection, pieces that simply looked like nothing else on the market today. The H20 evokes the engine of a car, almost, better than most automobile-inspired watches. And while the size, at 51mm, is larger than most watches today, which are trending smaller, the watch is imposing due to its futuristic design—it looks like it came straight out of Blade Runner 2049.
Since the introduction of the silver/blue and black/green H20 pieces, HYT has continued to expand the collection with more colors: a stainless steel version with black PVD coating and red liquid, another black version with blue liquid, and the recently unveiled brown version with red liquid (which is limited to eight pieces).
A Golden H0 & H4 Variations
Along with the new H20 collection, HYT released a golden version of their H0 at SIHH 2018. Matched with a black liquid and matt black strap, the H0 Gold is sleek, sophisticated, and continues to stand out from the crowd. Since then, HYT has doubled down on gold, releasing a version of the H0 Gold with red liquid/red strap and a smaller (48mm) version of its Skull watch, one version in pink gold and the other in gold and black DLC-coated titanium.
And most recently, HYT just unveiled new color variations of its H4 series. Punchy and bright, the new color variations for these pieces have re-energized this collection which HYT has had for a while. The new H4 pieces come in limited editions: two pieces with green liquid, one with a yellow minute hand (15 pieces), and the other with a green ring on the dial and green minute hand (50 pieces), one with red liquid and red minute hand (50 pieces), and one with blue liquid and blue minute hand (50 pieces), all in black DLC-coated titanium.
For 2019, Revolution can’t wait to see what HYT does next with its innovative liquid time telling.