A CONTEMPORARY ODE TO ANCIENT METALLURGY
Luxury watch makers Corum unveil new models from its futuristic Lab 01 collection made in ancient Damascus steel ...
One may not associate the concepts of ‘heritage’ and ‘lab’ with each other. However, it is this juxtaposition that inspires luxury watch makers Corum to embody a disruptive and contemporary approach towards watchmaking. First created in late 2018, the Corum Lab collection focuses on establishing a dialogue between the past and the future, and two limited-edition creations were debuted then. This year, Corum unveils another two new additions to the Heritage Corum Lab 01 family, each limited to 99 pieces.
The latest Lab 01 models retain their distinctive barrel-shaped cases like their predecessors, but Corum has chosen to produce the cases for these new timepieces in Damascus steel- a first for the brand. Instantly recognizable by its wavy pattern, Damascus steel is a type of alloy well-known to knife and sword makers. The history of ancient Damascus steel dates back to as early as the 4th century A.D., where the ancient city of Damascus was then well known for its weapon-makers and metallurgical prowess. Weapons made with this historical alloy were used by some of the most well-known warriors in the past, including the Crusaders.
Damascus steel is known for its exceptional hardness and resistance to shatter. Blades made from this material are sharper, stronger and more flexible than others. In ancient times, one was said to be able to slice through a strand of hair with a Damascus steel-sword in mid-air, and still have it remain extraordinarily sharp throughout the next few battles. However, the ancient art of producing this legendary alloy was a secret closely guarded by its makers, has been shrouded in mystery over the years. It is said that to date, no one has actually succeeded in uncovering the actual know-how behind ancient Damascus steel. However, technological advancements have enabled metallurgists to reproduce modern-day Damascus steel that have characteristics very similar to its ancestors.
The usage of Damascus steel serves as a nod to history, while the futuristic design of the Lab 01 embraces the experimental and modernistic approach to watchmaking that Corum stands for.
Available in a limited edition of 99 pieces, each of the Heritage Corum Lab 01 Damascus models are offered for $16,800.