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Intertwining Roots - Watchmaking, Artisanship & Technology

  • HSNY at the General Society Library 20 West 44th Street New York, NY, 10036 United States (map)

Michael Friedman - Historian for Audemars Piguet

Video recordings of meetings are available to HSNY members.

While most objects and technologies that we engage with on a daily basis will be upgraded in a matter of a couple years or less, expertly crafted mechanical watches are designed and constructed to last "forever." Mechanical watches are among a tiny category of objects of permanence that stand in defiance of the planned obsolescence that defines the vast majority of contemporary consumerism. This special place that watches holds in the present day is directly connected to the fact that watchmaking is among the most interdisciplinary fields in existence, deeply rooted in various spheres within both the arts and sciences. 

Friedman will explore how watchmaking's intertwined relationship with art and technology has been central to its evolution during the past 500 years. By examining key moments during the 1500s, the mid 1600s, the early 1800s, the Industrial Revolution, the mid 20th century, the Quartz Era and the Present Day, Friedman will shed light as to why mechanical watches continue to galvanize collectors and enthusiasts worldwide and why we are in a golden age of highly creative and innovative watchmaking. 

About Michael Friedman
Michael L. Friedman is an established horological expert, appraiser, curator, lecturer, auctioneer and producer. He is the Historian at Audemars Piguet. Michael's extensive career in watches and clocks began in 1996 at Willard House & Clock Museum where he served as assistant curator. In 1997, he joined The National Watch & Clock Museum as Curator where he co-developed 15,000 square feet of exhibition space devoted to the history of time measurement - from sundials to the atomic clock. In 1999, Michael was named VP & Department Head of Watches for Christie's in New York. In 2003 he founded MLF Horology which provided consultant and curator services for international collectors, institutions and auction houses.

Earlier Event: November 14
Theories of Time
Later Event: January 10
Horology in Art