Yunik reinvents the Murano glass

A specialist of Swiss made watchmaking and jewellery, the Achor group unveiled its new watch brand at Baseworld. These ultra-colourful, atypical and indeed unique watches are made from Murano glass, a material much sought-after in 13th century Venice, the city of lovers.

Reviving Murano glass could be considered a risky gamble, but then again, why not? Achor Group took up this challenge and presented a whole new brand to the world under a new board of directors. Created and directed by the late Luciana Taillefumier, former Achor SA has been taken over by three men – initiator Patrick Gassmann, Group Director, promoter Alain Beuret, Group Chairman, and long-term friend Peter Gschwind, Brand Manager. Together, they decided to resurrect the Murano brand – whose name can no longer be used – as a tribute to its founder, who saw the full artistic potential of Murano glass, a noble, elegant and particularly unique material. Yunik was born; but it is more than just a watch brand. It offers an entire artistic concept that reveals the wearer’s personality with its expressive designs.

A true icon of Venetian glassmaking culture, Murano glass is special in that every piece is unique. Its shimmering colours and unstructured curves are created according to traditional craftsmanship, the secrets of which are still fiercely guarded today by master glassmakers. This ancestral expertise earned its Venetian artisans a strong reputation for excellence from the 13th century. To this day, it still takes many years to learn the craft and at least a decade of experience to claim the title of master. The technique involves mixing natural raw materials such as quartz sand, limestone, potassium carbonate and clay. Artisans must also learn the melting points required to obtain the unique shades of Murano glass. Not forgetting the key ingredient – their artistic talent, as art serves to enhance their expertise.

Achor Group is giving the brand a modern ethos in tune with the young generation. Its aim is to be as close to its customers as possible. Through a pop-up store in Bern, the company was able to get to know its customers and appeal to their tastes with products as unusual and unique as they are.

At this year’s Baselworld, Yunik unveiled an extremely varied selection intended to express the personality of every individual, notably including a collection of larger-sized round watches and a range of tonneau-shaped models, as well as series featuring self-winding or hand-wound mechanical movements. The brand has also developed new variations of murrine – the Italian term for multicoloured glass canes, formed and combined while hot, then cut crossways. The creations draw inspiration from the latest design and colour trends while incorporating top-quality Swiss watchmaking technology thanks to RONDA quartz movements. Master glassmaker Giuseppe Inzerillo – also known by his artist’s name of Pino –, who specialises in the millefiori technique, was in attendance at Baselworld to explain the unique and captivating secrets of crafting Murano glass.

April 12, 2018