Catharsis, the soul of watches | JC Biver and the upcoming edition of Only Watch 2023


Catharsis, the soul of watches | JC Biver and the upcoming edition of Only Watch 2023

JC BIVER Watches is pleased to preview this new, unprecedented configuration in which dial, crown and hands play off each other in a completely new division of roles.

On a starlit night, the moon cresting over the horizon, a wave of sapphires breaks, sweeping aside hands and indexes to reveal a new order. Catharsis is a singular interpretation of the minute repeater carillon tourbillon, with no visible display of time. Made of titanium, the piece combines unusual handcrafts, with unique techniques for invisible gem-setting, stone marquetery and guilloché.


Thanks to the total absence of hands on the dial, and freed from all technical constraints, the dial can fully express itself with a seemingly random pattern of 89 sapphires, in three dimensions, to give volume to the stones, the natural effect of the movement of sea waves.


We give birth to the soul of the watch.” Jean-Claude Biver, after 50 years in the watchmaking industry, and his son Pierre, both passionate collectors, have created a hyper-exclusive brand. Free from all economic pressures, they have called upon the best specialists in each field (movements, dials, hands, bracelets, cases) to create museum-quality pieces of great prestige.



What is it about time that fascinates, if not obsesses, humans? Forever we have tried to interpret it, understand it and sometimes even master it. Watches for Jean-Claude and Pierre Biver, who are both passionate collectors, have always harbored this duality: on one side showing us we are well and alive in this time; on the other indicating our own time passing and slowly running out.

The Catharsis timepiece was an idea from an artist friend who once told Jean-Claude Biver: “Make me a minute repeater with no hands, no indexes. I want time to be MINE”. Self-evident in the way it captures the intricate relationship between a watch and its owner.

The singularity of this minute repeater carillon tourbillon resides in its giving the time without your having to look at it. The concept is to replace it with a true work of art, and in so doing to enhance the timekeeper. The starry sky above is made of silver obsidian, chosen for attributes recognized for thousands of years: it confers dynamism, optimism and is very stimulating. With stars of opal and a moon of meteorite, this sky is deeply poetic, levitating above the seascape that occupies the lower part of the dial. Composed of 89 sapphires – no two alike in size or weight – skillfully set, seemingly at random to reflect natural waves. Ultimately, time shows only through the hour hand at the back of the watch. It is flame-blued by hand in JC Biver’s workshops in the magnificent old farmhouse the brand calls home mid-way between Geneva and Lausanne.




The Catharsis timepiece is a distillation of watchmaking culture aimed at the enlightened watch lover. Each element tells a story, creating a bridge between the past, the present and the future. It is both a collector’s item and an art object, as even its smallest constituents, including those that cannot be seen, are decorated by hand. Because it is in the finishing touches that one recognizes the Biver signature, the quest for invisible beauty.



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