The watch in front of you might at first appear cryptic. Is this arrangement of lines and dots some form of analog Morse code or an alien language? Nope — it's independent brand Ochs und Junior's captivatingly creative take on the perpetual calendar watch, the Calendario Cent’Anni, and it's a lot more intuitive to read than you might think.
The Swiss brand is known for its unusual, minimalist aesthetic and alternative time display concepts — so what exactly are we looking at? The hours and minutes are easily recognizable and the same as on any traditional watch, and they're starkly contrasted against the dial along with the indices. The series of 31 windows indicate the date when filled with color via a rotating disc beneath the dial. (They're be easiest to read on the version of the watch that demarcates every fifth day with Arabic numerals.)
At 6 o'clock just below the month disc is a small seconds disc. Then, toward the center of the dial, you'll see a disc with a dot indicating twelve markers, which are the months. And finally within that turning disc is a tiny disc with four positions that turns every year to indicate a leap year, which occurs when it aligns with the dot. This perpetual calendar will (theoretically) only need adjustment after 100 years, hence the "Cent’Anni" part of its name.
It's not only the watch's visual display that's clever and minimalist, but also the horology under the dial. Ochs und Junior used an automatic movement from Ulysse Nardin that only indicates the time and date but gave it some significant modifications: The brand took this movement and was able to give it the more involved functions and indications you see here with only nine additional components. That's interesting and efficient, for sure, but it's also practical horology, because fewer moving parts mean fewer opportunities for things to go wrong, and easier servicing if they do.
All this fits in a 40mm titanium case with short lugs that should make its ergonomic wearing experience feel as well thought out as its dial. Ochs und Junior typically offers customizing options for its clients, but the Calendario Cent’Anni comes in set designs, which include a black dial with or without date markers as well as a white dial. Each variation has the same price of around $16,475, and is available to order directly from the brand online.