Keeper of Time Puts Watches on the Silver Screen

Keeper of Time Puts Watches on the Silver Screen

It’s remarkable that, up until now, there were no feature-length explorations of contemporary watchmaking. That’s all set to change with the premiere, later this week, of Keeper of Time, a movie that showcases the personalities, the work and the wonder of independent watchmaking on the large screen.

A project of passion and directorial debut by film industry veteran Michael Culyba, Keeper of Time features the story of four famous independent watchmakers; Philippe Dufour, Roger W. Smith, François-Paul Journe and Max Büsser. But beyond telling the tales of these incredible watchmakers, Keeper of Time also explores the world and culture around the watches, speaking to prominent figures like Audemars Piguet’s Head of Complications Michael Friedman, renowned collector and dealer Eric Ku and author and enthusiast Gary Shteyngart, along with many more. What makes this documentary great is that Culyba goes beyond timekeepers and explores the meaning of time itself, gaining an historical perspective of time, speaking to academics, experts and theoretical physicists to make sense of the ticking of seconds.

Michael Culyba, the director and producer of Keeper of Time
Michael Culyba, the director and producer of Keeper of Time
Making and finishing every component by hand, Philippe Dufour is widely considered the finest living watchmaker of our time
Making and finishing every component by hand, Philippe Dufour is widely considered the finest living watchmaker of our time
Inspired by the French virtuosos that preceded him, François-Paul Journe is a master innovator of watchmaking, continually pushing the possibilities of haute horology both aesthetically and technically
Inspired by the French virtuosos that preceded him, François-Paul Journe is a master innovator of watchmaking, continually pushing the possibilities of haute horology both aesthetically and technically
The exquisite 18k gold movement of F.P. Journe’s Tourbillon Souverain wristwatch
The exquisite 18k gold movement of F.P. Journe’s Tourbillon Souverain wristwatch
MB&F’s wristwatch, Horological Machine No. 6, imbues Maximilian Büsser’s radical avant-garde design
MB&F’s wristwatch, Horological Machine No. 6, imbues Maximilian Büsser’s radical avant-garde design

Or, in the words of Culyba; “Within these objects lies mankind’s unending pursuit for precision, our need to create exquisite beauty and our quest for the divine. They are timeless instruments crafted as mesmerising mechanical art that represent the very best of our finite lives.”

The film premieres on April 28, at 5:45 Eastern Time (US), both physically and through livestream. The livestream will be replayed four times on April 29, to allow various global timezones to watch. The premiere will also include a Q and A moderated by Hodinkee’s Jack Forster and including alongside the director a range of featured personalities, including Benjamin Clymer, Michael Friedman, Gary Shteyngart, Antiquarian Horologist Brittany Nicole Cox.

Find out more, and purchase tickets at keeperoftimemovie.com

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Felix Scholz

Felix Scholz has spent the last decade covering watches from his home in Australia. Given this, it's surprising that he still struggles with time zones. Over the years he's become a firm believer that less is more when it comes to watch design – except when a rainbow bezel is involved. He's written for numerous titles including Hodinkee, GQ, A Collected Man and more. These days he looks after the Australian edition of Revolution and takes a break from writing about watches to talk about them, as the co-host of OT: The Podcast.

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