These elegant new Nomos watches salute the spirit of Bauhaus design

By Stephen Pulvirent, August 27 2018
These elegant new Nomos watches salute the spirit of Bauhaus design

Nine colourful Nomos Tangente spinoffs pay handsome homage to the Bauhaus movement on the 100th anniversary of the legendary German art and design school.

One of the words most often used to describe Nomos Glashütte's watches is "Bauhaus." While that might be used as shorthand to cover things like "minimal" and "sleek," it's important to remember that the Bauhaus is an actual place.

The world-famous school of art and design was founded in Weimar, Germany, in 1919, meaning that next year will be its 100th anniversary. Despite closing in 1933, as most of its faculty fled the country in the lead-up to World War II, the impact of the Bauhaus on 20th century design really can't be overstated.

Taking that into account, it's only fitting that Nomos would release a collection of limited edition watches to celebrate the Bauhaus's centenary. The Tangente "A Century Of Bauhaus" collection is a series of nine watches, all variations on a theme.

The Tangente is sort of the proto-Nomos, and here we see the original, hand-wound version in all three major sizes – 33mm, 35mm, and 38mm – each with three special dial treatments.

The base dial color is "sketch paper", which is a matte, slightly yellowed hue...

... and then the circumference of each is ringed in one of the three primary colors, which were considered especially important to the Bauhaus artists.

Anchoring all of this is a set of black oxidized hands that match the printed markers and complete the understated lume-free look.

Each of the nine versions of the watch is limited to 100 numbered pieces, making 900 pieces all up, with engravings on the solid steel casebacks for each...

... and matched to a black Horween Shell Cordovan strap.

Initial thoughts

To surprise absolutely nobody, I'll just say it: I'm super into these and really like that Nomos is doing something to celebrate the Bauhaus's big anniversary (if a little early).

Most people think Bauhaus and assume it means all white everything and a certain dose of sterility. Not so.

The fact that Nomos is leaning into the more artistic principles of Bauhaus teachings and is taking inspiration from the actual practice of creating (hence the "sketch paper" colored dials) is both smart and a good way to veer away from what people might have been expecting from a limited edition like this.

Since there are actually nine watches here, there's a pretty healthy dose of variety, all things considered.

For me, I think I'd choose the 35mm Tangente with the blue accents if I had to pick just one.

The contrast between the warmth of the dial and the cool ring around the outer edge makes it stand out from the other two colorways, and the 35mm version of this watch still has the best balance and proportions (it is the original, after all).

The Nomos Tangente "A Century Of Bauhaus" collection sells for A$2,320 (33mm), A$2,510 (35mm) and A$2,710 (38mm).

Stephen Pulvirent

Stephen Pulvirent is the Managing Editor of specialist watch site Hodinkee and a regular contributor to Bloomberg.

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