To celebrate the 60th anniversary of diplomatic ties between China and France and the Chinese Year of the Dragon 2024, the first overseas Chinese intangible cultural heritage event - the Yu Garden Lantern Fair officially lit up at the Charming Garden in Paris, France on December 15th. China national brand Seagull Watches made a spectacular appearance with its classic lacquer tourbillon masterpiece "Chinese Zodiac Dragon Golden Lacquer Limited Tourbillon," conveying "Chinese culture" within a small space with artisan spirit and watchmaking skills, resonating with domestic and overseas audiences, and telling the "going global" story of the Chinese watch brand.
Using the Nation's Pinnacle Craft "Lacquer" to Convey China's Totem Culture
As the first overseas Chinese intangible cultural heritage event, the 72-day Yu Garden Lantern Fair brought the French a visual feast of Eastern and Western cultural fusion with the theme "The Mountains and Seas are Spiritually Potent." Dragon elements could be seen everywhere at the French Yu Garden Lantern Fair - the "Two Dragons Playing with a Pearl" at the entrance, coiled dragon pillars lining the streets, and the giant "Fish Leaping Over the Dragon Gate" lantern symbolizing great ambitions and aspirations...allowing everyone to early feel the festive joy of the "Chinese New Year."
In the bustling crowds, a rich "Chinese Red" strikes the eye as particularly dazzling scenery. As the national totem in Chinese traditional culture, the "dragon" symbolizes auspiciousness, nobleness and prosperity. 2024 also happens to be China's Year of the Dragon, and the "Chinese Zodiac Dragon Golden Lacquer Limited Tourbillon" watch from Seagull Watches that French connoisseurs are wearing is a limited collectible gift specially launched by Seagull for the Year of the Dragon. It ingeniously integrates traditional Chinese intangible cultural heritage crafts and the beauty of precision mechanical watches, equipped with an outstanding self-developed movement. As the seconds spin by, the coiled dragon lies hidden amidst painted splendor, with lacquer glittering like gold.
The lacquerware craft boasting thousands of years of history is a Chinese intangible cultural heritage. Due to the difficulty in procuring raw lacquer and the complexity of production processes, it is hailed as a national cultural gem. Rhinoceros leather lacquer is one of the most commonly applied techniques, but owing to the diversity of materials and tools as well as the high level of skill required, it has faced extinction several times in history, with existing artifacts extremely rare. The tourbillon face of this watch uses a rhino leather lacquer texture to signify the dragon's scales, with flowing cloud and water patterns seemingly depicting a coiled dragon lying within the dial, poised to strike.
The reverse side of the watch also employs rhino leather lacquer techniques, repeatedly applying gold foil between different lacquer layers and incorporating silk sculpting skills to create the traditional auspicious pattern of a dragon playing with a luminous pearl, symbolizing the relentless pursuit of the good life and endless heritage of the Chinese spirit. Notably, the dragon pearl and parts of the dragon body use the Japanese opal inlay technique, radiantly shimmering under sunlight with elegant luxury, depicting the auspicious imagery of the "dragon's domination over the four seas."