Académie Horlogère des Créateurs Indépendants


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Urban Jürgensen

Early Reference 2 in Rose Gold with Patina Dial sold


The venerable Urban Jürgensen & Sønner brand was founded in 1773 by Urban Jürgensen, a Danish watch and chronometer manufacturer, and celebrated its 250th anniversary in 2023. The brand has earned a reputation for producing outstanding pocket watches. In 1979, it was revived by Peter Baumberger, a passionate watch collector and entrepreneur, in collaboration with the remarkable British watchmaker Derek Pratt. The modern Urban Jürgensen collection was never mass-produced and was primarily aimed at selected connoisseurs and collectors.

This Reference 2 watch is one of the brand’s earliest releases, produced under Peter Baumberger and with the active involvement of Derek Pratt himself in the making of the watches, which is a good part of the appeal of the early collection. reports that only 175 examples of the Reference 2 were made in total. Probably 122 of these were encased in gold and the others in platinum. The number 10 on the dial of this watch makes it one of the earliest gold Reference 2 watches to appear on the market.


The Urban Jürgensen Reference 2 Patina Dial appears to be an extremely attractive purchase for the collector who wants to acquire an early, very valuable and rare mechanical wristwatch from a watch brand that specializes in collector’s haute horlogerie watches. What makes this watch particularly attractive is that it dates from the earliest period after the venerable brand was revived in the 1980s with the direct and active involvement of British watchmaker Derek Pratt. It is to him that the watch owes its beautiful guilloché dial and the assembly and adjustment of an ultra-thin automatic perpetual calendar caliber, which, combined with the serene, traditional gold case with double pomme bezel and elegant teardrop-shaped lugs, undoubtedly adds to the appeal of this watch.


The watch case is traditionally handcrafted, whereby the case ring and the drop-shaped lugs typical of Urban Jürgensen being made separately and then soldered. Connoisseurs will notice the impeccable craftsmanship of this process, where the solder line is barely visible on visual inspection. All parts of the case are carefully polished. The ‘double pomme’ profile of the polished bezel deserves special attention and gives the watch an unmistakable classic character. The same bezel design proved extremely successful in the creation of classic Blancpain wristwatches following the relaunch of the brand collection in 1983 by Jean-Claude Biver.

The dial is also an outstanding example of traditional craftsmanship, an aspect of Reference 2 that the brand, like all other early Urban Jürgensen releases, owes to its master watchmaker Derek Pratt, a protagonist of ancient decorative techniques. In particular, it is known that many early Urban Jürgensen watches, and most likely this example as well, were made by Derek Pratt himself, including the guilloché work, the results of which can be enjoyed when looking at the dial of this watch. The guilloché work on the Reference 2 dial consists of three different styles: a guilloché ‘lozenge’ in the center, a ‘vieux panier’ (basket-weave) guilloché for the date and moonphase sub-dials, and a filet sauté guilloché outline. All the decorations on the dial were made by hand on a rose machine, most likely by Derek Pratt himself – he is known to have been an outstanding master of this finishing technique. The dial of this watch is patinated, so you can see that the date ring is an applied part of the dial. The solid gold ‘Observatoire’ hands by Urban Jürgensen are equally difficult to manufacture. The diamond-polished inner inclination of the ‘eye’ of the hour hand makes it a real eye-catcher.

The movement inside is based on the ultra-thin Frédéric Piguet 71 self-winding caliber, which is still one of the best in its category. The module for the perpetual calendar was developed by the movement manufacturer Nouvelle Lémania for Urban Jürgensen – Peter Baumberger acquired the rights to this module for the Reference 2 and in a modified version with an additional power reserve indicator for the Reference 3. A special feature of the Reference 2 and Reference 3 is the lack of a leap year indicator on the dial. Many may consider this an omission, but it should be noted that without this display, the dial has been given a remarkable symmetry and conciseness that is rare in perpetual calendars. Furthermore, Patek Phillippe and Audemars Piguet dispensed with the leap year indicator on some of their early perpetual calendar wristwatches. Today, this feature is seen as a sign of the times. Rich Fotrdon of reports that Derek Pratt chose not to include this indicator because he could not find a version of the dial design that suited his aesthetic sensibilities.

In 2021, Kari Voutilainen, the independent Swiss watchmaker of Finnish origin, took over Urban Jürgensen together with a group of investors and was appointed CEO. The style and obvious craftsmanship, as well as the high proportion of manual labour invested in the production of their watches, are common to both brands.


GlassSapfire glass
FunctionsPerpetual calendar, moonphase, hours, minutes
Case material18-carat rose gold
YearCirca 1990
Movementmechanical self-winding Frédéric Piguet Calibre FP71




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