If You Want to Know What Makes a Watch Run

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Coming up: Free workshops for anyone interested in what makes a watch run, if you can be in Geneva that is.

The Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (G.P.H.G.), the foundation that stages the watch industry’s largest annual competition, has scheduled the workshops from Nov. 2 through Nov. 20 at the Musée Rath in Geneva.

Conducted by fourth-year students from l’École d’Horlogerie de Genève, “the watchmaking workshops consist of dismantling a simple movement and then reassembling all its components in order to learn about the complexity of a watch mechanism,” Carine Maillard, the G.P.H.G.’s director, wrote in an email.

Three workshops are scheduled daily, at 11:30 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m., except on Mondays, when the museum will be closed. Each workshop is about an hour, can accommodate eight participants and is conducted in French, although Valérie Boscat, the G.P.H.G.’s head of communications and marketing, wrote, “if we have a group of English-speaking people, we can arrange for the instructors to give the explanations in English.”

“More than 1,500 people have taken part in the workshops” since they began in 2017, Ms. Maillard wrote, adding that they “have been a great success with people of all ages who are curious to have an enriching experience that allows them to discover an exciting universe, an integral part of Geneva’s heritage.”

She noted that the workshops also have helped introduce young people to professions within the watchmaking industry. And, Ms. Boscat wrote, despite the Covid restrictions in place in the city during 2021, “392 people took part, including 112 schoolchildren with their teachers.”

The workshops can be combined with guided tours of the museum’s current exhibition of the 90 watches nominated for the 2022 competition, Ms. Maillard wrote, adding that the museum will offer regular tours of the exhibition on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays.

The G.P.H.G. awards — often described as the Oscars of the watch world — honor such categories as best “artistic crafts” and best “calendar and astronomy.” The ceremony this year will be held Nov. 10 at the Théâtre du Leman in Geneva.

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