If you are an avid enthusiast/collector of watches, then you are probably no stranger to the work and horological achievements of the legendary Gerald Genta. For those who do not know, Gérald Genta was famed for the creation of some of the most seminal watch designs including the Royal Oak and the Nautilus which as we know it now, redefined the watch world in the late 20th century.
During the 1980s, Genta obtained the rights to manufacture timepieces with a very focused theme to celebrate Walt Disney and his famous cartoon characters from Mickey Mouse. However, when Genta eventually presented these designs at the trade fair, they were not met with the same level of enthusiasm by collectors today due to their unorthodox design at the time.
That being said, offered here today is one such timepiece that was inspired by the spirit of that era – the Gérald Genta Retro Fantasy “Mickey Mouse” M.10. This is a design that fundamentally combines two very different worlds of art and culture. Think about it, it is a Mickey Mouse on a watch created by a world-renowned designer, how much more iconic can that be? Sure, the name Gérald Genta is mostly associated with landmark designs like the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak, the Patek Philippe Nautilus, the Omega Constellation, etc, but in my opinion, the Mickey Mouse watch, like the one we have here today, feels like a refreshing palette cleanser for the senses, and for good reason.
At first glance, you will notice the dial on this M.10 is crafted out of a cream-coloured mother-of-pearl and has a gentle guilloche emanating from its centre. It is further complemented by a white mother-of-pearl crescent-shaped inlay on the right side, which allows the dial to gently shimmer in different shades of lighting, providing a very subtle visual contrast to the colours of a cheery Mickey Mouse. Speaking of which, the mother-of-pearl crescent-shaped inlay as seen here houses the retrograde minutes and is indicated by Mickey’s articulated left hand (read: the minute hand), which makes a jump back to the zero-minute mark at 12 o ‘clock once it completes an hour of travel across the dial. At the 9 o ‘clock position, you will find a jumping hour display window that uses matching typography for its numerals. Encased within the M.10’s 36mm stainless steel case is the modified, 21-jeweled, automatic ETA Cal. 2892A2 that carries a power reserve of 42 hours.
As an enthusiast myself, I have acquired and dealt with many serious brands over the years, but to see something so whimsical, unusual yet exciting in its own quirky way, I can’t help but feel just as excited whenever I look at this watch, it reminded me of a core memory as a child putting on a Mickey Mouse watch for the first time.
While these Genta Disney pieces were overlooked for a long time, collectors of late have realized the unique design and complication of these watches, especially the mechanical ones like the M.10 in 36mm and as such, it is simply not easy to find one.