Hands-On With The New Oris Artelier S — With A Capital “S” For Both Style And Simplicity
The Oris Artelier collection holds a special place in my heart. The very first luxury watch I bought was an Oris Art Blakey limited edition from that same collection. I still wear it quite regularly and enjoy its bass-drum-inspired dial a lot. I think it came out simultaneously with the James Morrison Academy of Music limited edition at the end of 2019. And since then, it has been awfully quiet around the brand’s Artelier collection — until now!
As Ben said in his introduction article for the Artelier S, the brand’s Aquis, Big Crown, and Divers Sixty-Five models are much more popular. On its website, Oris also puts the Artelier collection last when presenting all its different lines. I feel that’s a bit unfair because the collection works very well next to those sportier watches. And yes, the Artelier watches might be a little less exciting than the others. Still, I think they’re very nice watches in their category, especially for the price. Let’s take a closer look at the new Oris Artelier S in both black and green.
A familiar pebble-like case and movement
This new Artelier S features the same pebble-shaped and fully polished case as those last two jazz versions. It measures 38mm wide, 11mm thick (including the double-domed sapphire), and about 44mm from lug to lug. But instead of having a limited-edition solid steel case back, both watches have an exhibition case back through which you can see the signature red Oris rotor. Both the case back and the sapphire crystal over the dial are heavily domed. The resulting pebble shape sits very nicely and comfortably on the wrist.
It’s also a very clean and friendly shape. This watch can’t really offend anyone. And I like that about it, but others might find it a bit boring. The signed and finely serrated crown is nicely sized for the case and makes it easy to set the movement inside. Oris calls this the caliber 733, but the brand is also open about the fact that it’s a trusty Sellita SW200-1 base movement. It runs at a 28,800vph frequency, has a power reserve of 38 hours, and can be manually wound and hacked. But you probably knew that already.
A masterclass in simplicity
So, thus far, there hasn’t been much new to speak of. But now we get to those very open and clean-looking dials. They only feature a white minute track with lumed marks at every hour and the Oris logo at 12. The three straight, polished hands elegantly hover over it and add to this modern dress watch’s sophisticated, no-nonsense look. The hour and minute hands are easy to distinguish thanks to their size, and both have received an application of Super-LumiNova. All in all, the dial layout seems like a masterclass in simplicity to me.
The defining feature of the new Artelier S, though, is the dial’s soft sunburst texture in combination with the sophisticated green and black. It’s a very toned-down and modest execution of a sunburst dial. The chosen green tone is dark and never in your face, but it’s always recognizable as green. The soft black dial sometimes has a blue shimmer, which could be due to the antireflective coating on the inside of the sapphire crystal. Although the sunburst effect is sometimes barely noticeable, together with the matte finish, it adds to the friendly character that I described earlier.
An optical illusion…or not?
However, a time-only watch with such a less-is-more dial design could indeed be a bit boring. Well, not the Artelier S, and that’s because of my favorite feature, one that’s also present on my Art Blakey. Because of the domed sapphire crystal, it almost looks like the outer edge of the dial slopes down a bit. It reminds me of the pie-pan dials of decades gone by. On my Art Blakey, it makes the drum design jump right out at me, but it also causes a very playful and unique three-dimensional effect on the Artelier S.
I’m still not sure whether the dial on my Art Blakey actually slopes down. I don’t think it does, but it would also be quite cool if it did. I considered asking my contact at Oris about it, but I’m not sure if I really want to know the answer. It’s also quite nice not to know exactly what’s going on there and just enjoy the looks of it.
No price increase here!
Both versions of the Artelier S come on a very plain and soft calfskin leather strap together with a folding clasp. The strap on the black-dialed version is black, and the green dial is paired with a brown leather strap. The price of the new Oris Artelier S is set at €1,900. Funnily enough, that’s the same as what I paid for my Art Blakey more than three years ago. Considering all the price increases in recent years, it’s nice to see that Oris didn’t do that here. Please check out the official Oris website for more information on the new Artelier S.
My favorite of the two versions is most definitely the green one. It’s a very nice green tone that works great together with the modest sunburst and soft matte finish. Let me know what you think of the new Oris Artelier S in the comments below.