As always, some Swiss watchmakers pushed the boundaries of what we normally think of as a watch at Baselworld in 2012. These innovative examples tend to be polarizing examples of the craft but if the watch manufacturer's intent is publicity, they succeeded and then some. Her are the four that caught our eye:
1. Jaquet Droz Petite Heure Minute Relief Dragon features a made of black mother-of-pearl dial with a dragon motif crafted from 22 kt gold, and a striking red ruby.
2. Nord Zeitmaschine Variocurve is Daniel Nebel's reinterpretation of how time should be read. There's no fixed hand. But if you can figure out how to tell the time, you are doing better than we are.
3. De Grisigono Tondo Tourbillon Gioiello is Baselworld 2012's most unusual women's watch. It sparkles with more than 5 carats of white diamonds and an offset tourbillon.
4. Richard Mille RM 039 Aviation E6-B has some highly unusual features, including a bidirectional rotating bezel that can be used to calculate fuel burn, flight times, ground speed, and density altitude. The unique tourbillon complicaiton is made of 740 parts, 58 jewels, and includes a 70-hour power reserve.