Skin-deep beauty: The RJ-Romain Jerome x Xoil Tattoo-DNA

RJ ink

Text: Angelyn Kwek

RJ-Romain Jerome breaks conformity once again in collaboration with tattoo artist Xoil for a one-of-a-kind timepiece

Leave your outdated notions about tattoos at the last webpage because avant-garde haute horlogerie has taken on a new form as RJ-Romain Jerome breaches conventionality and the traditional cultural stigma with the limited edition Tattoo-DNA watch. A collaborative effort together with celebrated French tattooist Xoil, this inked marvel is nothing short of breathtaking in both artistic and horology virtues.

An inked creation of profound magnificence, Xoil and the innovative Swiss luxury maison have poured out their respective expertise in a collective ingenuity that puts the raw imagery of tattooing and the most cutting-edge watchmaking savoir-faire in an all-new presentation. Gravitating around five themes of belief, balance, feeling, perception and emotion, the Tattoo-DNA draws inspiration from 19th century imagery, translated by Xoil into animal and mythological figures inked across five leather straps in one seating — thus ensuring uniquely illustrated watches with no overlap in tattoo designs.

Rj-Romain Jerome Tattoo-DNA by Xoil limited edition

A distinct style with an unmistakable street savvy, the curious 44mm-sized half-dial is an echo of the French tattooist's nature as an avid collector of antiquities. Using a water jet to achieve a flawless cut, the separated dial reveals a contrasting visual: A clean traditional Grand Feu enamel dial marked by Roman numerals is balanced against the stark lines of its exposed skeletonised movement. Though of divergent elements, the half-dial sits in perfect alignment with the revealed bridges where one's gaze is drawn to the spinning balance wheel at 6 o'clock. Another eye-catching facet is the partially skeletonised small seconds counter at 9 o'clock, integrated right at the border between the opposing sides as seen as a nexus that connects both planes. This duality beats with the RJ004-M black chrome movement, the mechanical heart to its tattooed skin. A creation of two masteries encapsulated in a singular form, the RJ-Romain Jerome Tattoo-DNA by Xoil is exceptional individualism of the highest order.

The 25-piece limited edition RJ-Romain Jerome Tattoo-DNA by Xoil is available at L'Atelier by The Hour Glass.