CHOPARD - L.U.C XP Urushi Snake

CHOPARD - L.U.C XP Urushi Snake

A compendium of traditional skills for the year of the snake

Chopard offers an encounter between various traditional forms of craftsmanship by associating graceful dials created using time-honoured decorative techniques with the understated lines of its L.U.C XP: an extremely refined ultra-thin timepiece equipped with a mechanical self-winding movement, L.U.C Calibre 96.17-L.

CHOPARD - L.U.C XP Urushi SnakeThe quintessence of the ancestral Japanese art of Urushi, combined with the ultimate degree of Swiss horological refinement: if one were to sum up the new L.U.C XP Urushi Snake in just a few words, it would doubtless be in such terms. Conceived to celebrate the year of the snake according to the Chinese calendar, its dial entirely hand-painted using traditional techniques depicts a flowering bush, a symbol of good luck, with a golden snake coiled around it.

The snake is the sixth sign of the Chinese zodiac that comprises 12, all of them animals. It is considered enigmatic, intuitive, introspective and particularly refined. Ancestral Chinese wisdom sees its presence in a home as an assurance that the family will never lack means of sustenance. Tradition also holds that people born in a year of the snake are intelligent, astute and wise.

Urushi is a long-established lacquering art. The varnish is derived from the sap of the Urushi tree, also called the “lacquer tree” or “Japanese varnish tree”, mainly found in Japan and China. Somewhat like rubber from the hevea brasiliensis tree, the resin can only be harvested once a year, and in very small quantities. Three to five years after it is collected, the resin is treated to transform it into an extremely resistant, honey-textured lacquer. It is applied in very thin successive layers, traditionally on everyday objects such as bowls or boxes.

Maki-e, a technique derived from the art of Urushi, consists of sprinkling the lacquered coating with metal powder – in this case gold – in order to accentuate its outlines. The gold dust is applied using bamboo tubes and small natural-hair brushes in order to trace extremely fine lines. This art requires a degree of skill and meticulous care such as only a few experienced Urushi specialists still master.

Such exquisite works of art could not have been better showcased than by the refinement of the L.U.C XP. A supremely elegant ultra-thin timepiece measuring 39.5 mm in diameter and 6.8 mm thick, it is the symbol of Chopard’s horological mastery. Developing and producing a mechanical self-winding movement equipped with two barrels ensuring a 65-hour power reserve that can fit into such a slender feat is an impressive achievement indeed.

Reference Ref. 161902-5051 – in 18-carat rose gold with Snake dial
Movement L.U.C 96.17-L
Power Reserve 65 hours
Winding Mechanical self-winding
Functions Hours, minutes
Case 18-carat rose gold
diameter 39.50 mm
18-carat rose gold crown with L.U.C logo
Glareproofed sapphire crystal
Dial Dial adorned with a snake motif using the Urushi technique
Gilt dauphine-type hour and minute hands
Water-resistance 30 metres
Bracelet/Strap Hand-sewn alligator leather strap
18-carat rose gold pin buckle