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March felt like a decade, April passed in a flash and May feels like it’s barely happening. From the confines of our homes, the passage of time has taken on a different texture of late, the minutes and hours by turn stretched and compressed in the maw of isolation. In other words, what better time for the comforting presence of a wristwatch? For design lovers seeking respite from the temporal void, here are our top five architecture-inspired timepieces.

1
Pei Collection by Breda

The clean lines and elegant geometries of these I.M. Pei–inspired watches make for a simple standout. Honouring the Pritzker Prize winner, Breda’s budget-friendly eponymous collection features a 41-millimetre stainless steel case and a stitched leather strap. The quartz timepieces come in a range of colours and finishes.

2
Bau by Swatch

2019 was the year of Bauhaus appreciation. Timed to the movement’s 100th anniversary, a wave of Bauhaus-inspired products hit the shelves. The Swatch Group got in on the action, using the primary colours and distinct geometries of Bauhaus design – hinting at the likes of Wassily Kandinsky and Marcel Breuer – to create an unpretentious and subtly playful homage.

3
True Thinline Les Couleurs Le Corbusier by Rado

Colour me Corb? A leading proponent and pioneer of colour theory, Le Corbusier designed the “Architectural Polychromy” system – consisting of 63 harmonized hues that embody spatial and emotional effects – which is the point of reference for Swiss brand Rado’s striking monochrome collection. The limited series is available in a wide range of Le Corbusier–approved hues.

4
Max Bill by Junghans

It’s not so much Bauhaus-inspired as (almost) pure Bauhaus. Designed by architect and industrial designer Max Bill – a notable apprentice of Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee and Oskar Schlemmer – Junghans’ collection of mechanical watches was launched in 1961 and remains largely unchanged to this day. While the watches were produced decades after the Bauhaus heyday, Bill’s pedigree offers a rare direct lineage with the century-old design school.

5
Tangente by NOMOS Glashütte

Bauhaus is a theme here. Combining a minimalist aesthetic with a subtle homage to early modernism, NOMOS Glashütte’s classic Tangente collection has remained a staple of the luxury German watchmaker’s portfolio for over 25 years. The typography of the Tangente 101‘s 35-millimetre watch face nods to the legendary design school’s aesthetic, while maintaining an appropriately pared down look.

Watch This Space: 5 Architecture-Inspired Timepieces

From Bauhaus to Le Corbusier and I.M. Pei, these wristwatches translate architectural inspiration to the personal scale.

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