The 10th edition of Only Watch (a charity event to raise funds for research on Duchenne muscular dystrophy) is right around the corner. For the event, Gérald Genta submits a unique piece featuring Mickey Mouse in the famous octagonal cases that Genta used in the past. It’s the first time we’ve seen this form since Bvlgari acquired the brand in 2000. But that’s not the only interesting thing about this watch…

Gérald Genta Mickey Mouse Only Watch 2023

Gérald Genta Only Watch 2023 Unique Piece

This year doesn’t just mark the 10th edition of the Only Watch charity event or the 100th anniversary of Disney (hence Mickey Mouse on this dial). In fact, 2023 also marks the 50th anniversary of the first watch that Gérald Genta produced under his own name. That’s a lot of celebrating for just one watch, but as you can see, Mickey Mouse is on it holding a cake in one hand, and the other is the retrograde minute hand.

Gérald Genta Ref. 3622 from the mid-1990s — Photo: Antiquorum

Raising funds and awareness for Duchenne muscular dystrophy

Mickey Mouse and Gérald Genta also go way back. The watch designer famously used Mickey in several of his creations through the years. This time, however, it’s truly special and unique, having such a playful dial while also featuring a minute repeater complication. This watch will be auctioned on November 5th in Geneva to raise awareness and funds for research on an awful disease called Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

The onset of DMD symptoms happens in early childhood, usually between ages two and three. The disease primarily affects boys, but in rare cases, it can affect girls. According to the Muscular Dystrophy Association, “Until relatively recently, boys with DMD usually did not survive much beyond their teen years. Thanks to advances in cardiac and respiratory care, life expectancy is increasing and many young adults with DMD attend college, have careers, get married, and have children. Survival into the early 30s is becoming more common than before.” 

Inside La Fabrique du Temps — Image: Gerard Uferas / LVMH

Jumping hour, retrograde minutes, and a minute repeater

This special Gérald Genta Only Watch 2023 piece was developed and created on the initiative of La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton, managed by Michel Navas and Enrico Barbasini. A retrograde and a minute repeater are two complications that Genta, the master himself, loved so much but was never able to combine into one watch during his lifetime. Also, the jumping hour and minute repeater is quite a rare combination because the watchmakers need to develop two different mechanisms (one for the striking mechanism and one for the jumping hours) that need to be completely in sync and energy-efficient. What’s more, the arm of Mickey Mouse, which operates as the retrograde minute hand, utilizes a continuous shock absorber as it returns to zero, so it shows a very smooth movement of the hand (waving!).

Gérald Genta Mickey Mouse Only Watch 2023

Manufacture caliber GG-001 developed by La Fabrique du Temps

The Gérald Genta Only Watch 2023 dial is enameled in-house by Nicolas Doublel. As written above, it shows a Mickey Mouse holding a cake, with black and red numerals in a Disney-style typography. As you can see in the images, there are two crowns. The one at 9 o’clock is actually a white gold pusher to activate the two-hammer minute repeater. At 3 o’clock is the white gold winding crown adorned with a ruby cabochon. The case itself is 18K white gold and measures 40mm in diameter and 10.96mm in height.

Inside is the caliber GG-001, a manufacture caliber fully developed and assembled by La Fabrique du Temps. Since 2014, La Fabrique du Temps has produced complications exclusively for Louis Vuitton, of which the Gérald Genta brand is now a part. This movement offers 80 hours of power reserve and operates at a frequency of 3Hz. The Gérald Genta Only Watch 2023 timepiece has a red rubber strap and a white gold tang buckle.

For more information on this unique piece, visit the official Gérald Genta website.