Hublot presents the limited-edition Big Bang Tourbillon Samuel Ross – the watchmaker’s first collaborative effort with artist Samuel Ross, its brand ambassador since 2020.
Describing himself as a creative director, the 30-year-old multi-disciplinary artist, filmmaker, and fashion designer graduated from Leicester De Montfort University in 2012 with a first-class honours degree in graphic design and illustration. Since then, he has collaborated with many brands and creative outlets – from Oakley and Nike to Dr Martens and Mackintosh. He launched his men’s Luxury Sportswear label A-Cold-Wall in late 2015, and his design studio SR_A in 2019.
“Hublot personifies velocity, precision, and exploration. Pairing the unparalleled craft and expertise of Swiss watchmaking alongside a spirit of sharp, innovative thinking and design solutions, crystallised the cadence between [Hublot CEO] Ricardo & I,” said Ross following the unliving of the watch.
The Hublot-Ross connection dates back to 2019, when Ross was awarded the prestigious Hublot Design Prize. A year later, he was announced as an official brand ambassador. The occasion was marked by the unveiling of Reform, a sculpture designed to encapsulate 40 years of Hublot.
The sculpture embodies Ross’ interpretation of Hublot’s Fusion ethos by combining granite – a timeless, organic material – with steel – a modern, manmade material. The production process also unites the past and present by employing traditional hand-finishing and cutting-edge machining. The result is a 40cm high artwork that is deceptively simple with an industrial aesthetic.
This philosophy has been reinterpreted for the 45mm Big Bang Tourbillon Samuel Ross. Ross’s signature use of colour and love of stark geometry and urban design come together with the innovation and precision that prevail in the work of both Ross and Hublot.
“Our goal is to create a universe that leverages the strengths of contemporary engineering, spatial design and digital. This is reflected in the focus on fine details, with striking, bold & unapologetic results. We see the future of luxury as a lateral experience, offering a multigenerational access point that enables luxury to engage global audiences,” says Ross.
The distinctive, stylised hexagon of the Big Bang Ross’s case is reflected in the titanium honeycomb mesh used on the sapphire dial, case, case-back and strap. A fundamental building block of nature, seen in environments from beehives and snake’s scales to pineapple skin and snowflakes. This robust and efficient shape, which can be repeated without gaps or overlapping, has been appropriated as a standard for modern-day construction and design thanks to the seamless fit of each unit. The hexagon is also a key strand running through Ross’s designs.
Although the new Big Bang may be a wearable sculpture, Ross was well aware of its need to be durable and ergonomic. Thus, the use of lightweight, open-worked titanium structure and malleable rubber strap ensure its comfort on the wrist. A proponent of colour theory, Ross has chosen orange – representing energy and optimism – for the strap and accents on the crown and tourbillon bridge and lateral bumpers that protect the case. It forms a bright contrast to the sober grey of the satin-finished case and bezel. The 282-component HUB6035 calibre within beats at 3 Hz and gives 72 hours of power reserve.
“The youngest artist we have ever worked with, Samuel Ross’s 360-degree approach is unique and intelligent, incorporating the watch, packaging, communication, and visual identity. What is so special about this collaboration is the direct interaction between design and object, ideas, and form. Samuel has pushed our team to work with new and innovative materials and shapes. It’s a really dynamic and fulfilling partnership,” commented Hublot CEO, Ricardo Guadalupe.
Just 50 pieces will be produced. To celebrate the launch, Ross’s signature colours will envelop Hublot’s 5th Ave boutique in New York City. The takeover will be repeated in Hublot stores across the globe, bringing the Samuel Ross universe to the world of horology.