Luxury & Fashion

Jul 1, 2017

THE DESIGNER BEHIND REVERSO

The history of Polish Janek Deleskiewicz is, nowadays, inseparable from the history of an international icon among brands watches: Jaeger-LeCoultre; and, above all, its most successful model: Reverso.

In his childhood he was surrounded by books about great artists such as Picasso, Gauguin or Monet and perhaps that has caused him to want to follow the study of arts. The mother, however, a school teacher, advised him to choose a more reliable future. Thus, he got into the University of Technology. He didn't wish to be an engineer, but after finding industrial design his formation started to take a new meaning.

After finishing his studies, he found his first job in a car representative of the car brand Ford, in Bordeaux, France. He moved to Paris in 1977, doing work in various areas, all connected with drawing, from furniture, to clothing and footwear, transportation, communication and food industry. In this last one he watched and participated in the revolution in which everything was being thought: packaging, conservation, convenience, preparation.

During this period, he was involved permanently in organising or visiting art exhibitions – he wanted to do and see as much as possible.

Invited, at first, to work only for a few months, Janek started working in Jaeger-LeCoultres' company in 1988 and hasn't left yet. It was a dream that came true, all due to his technical formation allied, of course, to the art of design knowledge. The experience became more gratifying thanks to the freedom the team was giving him in order to join his personality to the innovation of the watches.

By the time Janek took place within the creative team the company was only producing pocket watches and there was a single line. Nowadays they offer seven distinguished lines, all different in their shapes and concepts. The purpose is to move towards the new demands from the markets and, sign of change, are the new collections dedicated to the feminine market.

The first development Deleskiewicz brought into JLC was to use the two faces of the watch, allowed by the improvement of the materials. Thus, he created a piece which had the ability to be a watch during the day and become an art piece in the evening, without even being necessary to take it off the wrist to change it – it is named Reverso Duetto and it was created by Janek in 1995.

If he hadn't got so succeeded in this area, Deleskiewicz would have been a saxophone player. He already used his musical skills in the brands presentations and, to him, the two arts are not so distinctive from one another, much on the contrary, each piece of jewellery he develops has its own music, as much as the expression of time is fundamental to the musical context. The art director believes in the capacity to transmit emotions through an object, a symbolism way beyond its primary purpose.

Janek always carries a drawing notebook with him. Any voyage or experience can become an inspirational mote and, these sketches, can become the essence of a new collection, as it is after these sketches that the future piece projects are born.

Nowadays, he lives in Paris and travels regularly to Switzerland, where is head office of the company is located. And says he would choose New York as a second option for living, after the quantity of movies produced in the city and which have influenced him.

But the biggest influence he had in life was the one of his father who always used a three pieces suit and British watches – two of those are still functioning today. Janek let's show that the father picture surely influenced him and the taste for design and, from him, he kept one of the best teachings, he told him he would many friends and family when he grew up, but he would always be alone.

A teaching which helps him actually as he maintains an almost roving life, between cities and necessary voyages to work, always with this conscience of its importance in order to keep the creative skill.

The artist and musician who revolutionised a luxury watch brand holding two centuries of history, uses his favourite Reverso in his wrist and believes the bigger luxury someone can have is to have some free time.

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