Quick Take

Max Bill for most watch enthusiasts, is a name that is pretty much synonymous with Junghans, and with good reason some of the company's most iconic designs were from his mind and hand. *Bill studied at the Dessau branch of the Bauhaus art school before World War II, and became one of the foremost exponents of its design philosophy; he worked under some of the school's most famous teachers, including Wassily Kandinsky and Paul Klee.*
Artist and designer Max Bill, in 1970 (photo, Marcel Vogt)
Born in Winterthur, Switzerland, in 1908, Bill left the Dessau Bauhaus school in 1929 and moved to Zurich, where he began a long and very prolific career he produced a wide variety of artworks and design objects, including public sculptures, architecture, furniture, and of course, watches and clocks for Junghans. One of his kitchen clocks is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York (where author and Talking Watches guest Gary Shteyngart picked up his Max Bill wristwatch, which turned out to be a sort of gateway drug for his own obsession with watches).
The Bauhaus school building, Dessau. Image, Wkipedia
The watch is overall a standard Junghans Max Bill Chronoscope, but with a few additional subtle nods to the Bauhaus school. The red hands and date window are probably the most obvious examples on the dial side the Dessau school building has as its most significant color accent, a bright red door at the lower right hand side of the front of the building. The anthracite case and grey calf strap reflect the general color palette of the building and as well, the extensive use made in Bauhaus architecture of concrete.
Initial Thoughts

The standard Max Bill Chronoscope design is probably one of the most intelligently thought out chronograph designs out there; it's got a clarity and simplicity that has, like the original Max Bill watch design from 1962, stood the test of time extremely well and it stands in stark contrast to the somewhat cluttered appearance of many other modern chronographs (I have always felt that of all the complications it is the chronograph that has the potential to bring out the worst in a watch designer). Junghans has wisely chosen to leave well enough largely alone, and the red accents on the dial and hands offer the same subtle punch as the red door on the Dessau Bauhaus building.
The back of the watch is perhaps a little bit more of a departure from strict Bauhaus design philosophy, but it is nonetheless rather cleverly done. The case back is engraved with an image of the Bauhaus Dessau building, including that red door, but the windows of the building are actually transparent, and allow you to see the movement. Though it's certainly a representational image, rather than the celebration of abstract form characteristic of much Bauhaus influenced design, the clean geometry of the building keeps the whole thing from looking cluttered, as does the use of a monochromatic, low-contrast palette.
Junghans is doing several Bauhaus anniversary models, all limited editions; this particular steel version of the 100 Jahre Bauhaus Chronoscope is an LE of 1000 pieces worldwide. In some respects, although this is maybe a less rigorous interpretation of Bauhaus philosophy than some of the other Max Bill timepieces, it's also got a bit more pop than the more monochromatic iterations I guess Walter Gropius (the founder of Bauhaus) knew what he was doing when he put that red door on the building. Available in October.
The Basics

Brand: Junghans
Model: Max Bill Chronoscope 100 Jahre Bauhaus
Diameter: 40mm
Thickness: 14.4mm
Case Material: stainless steel with anthracite matte PVD coating
Dial Color: white matte
Indexes: painted
Lume: dots at the quarters with red SuperLumiNova on the hands
Water Resistance: 3 bar/30 meters
Strap/Bracelet: grey leather
The Movement

Caliber: J880.2 (base ETA 7750)
Functions: time; 30 minute chronograph; date
Power Reserve: 48 hours
Winding: automatic
Pricing & Availability

Price: $2295
Availability: October 2019
Limited Edition: 1000 pieces
See it online, at Junghans.de.


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