Ultimately, a high quality watch brand with all that that entails is an “essence” which, just like any living entity, has a basic structure, a type of DNA and an “outward appearance”. The same principle also applies to a large commercial company, a political party, a fashion brand, in fact to any type of structuring in which different individual parts work together around a basic idea. An underlying “code” determines the structure and the outer appearance of the entity. This breakdown into an underlying structure plan and its implementation not only occurs in living beings and in commercial or social structures. “Dead” matter also follows the same principle. Consider a crystal. Here there is something similarly fundamental which must be present right at the beginning: a first attempt at the crystal lattice. From this first attempt, the crystal starts to grow. Atom after atom attaches to the crystal lattice of the first tiny crystallisation point, and the crystal grows in exactly the same lattice structure as the first point of attachment. Ultimately, every clearly structured “entity” consists of a code, i.e. a set of information, and of the implementation of this information in material reality.
For a watch brand that is not only design-based, but has its own inner substance, it is a matter of ensuring that the “values” for which the watch stands are clearly defined, and are expressed equally clearly. Ultimately the customer buys this “atmosphere”, the reference to the abstract concepts that are behind the watch. Although the design plays a role, it always stands in the light of the brand’s framework.
So what is the core message of Niveau élevé, the crystal lattice structure which defines the look and feel of the watch brand, the DNA through which everything is built?
It is the breakthrough from confinement, the fixing of life on the external course, into the inner consciousness, the inner vastness, the creation of a perception of that which exists beyond the external course of this world.
Truly the most interesting phase of a major brand is the start. This is when the DNA or the crystal lattice of the future structure is formed. It is as in the creation story of the universe. It is the Big Bang from which everything emerges and which determines everything. This start, the phase of emergence, contains the entire essential element of a watch, the manifestation of the core message, the DNA or the crystal lattice which then sometimes manifests itself further across generations.
However even this abstract concept, the soul of a brand, is only a reflection in our marvellous world, a counterpart of something else which is on the other side of what we are able to grasp with our measuring instruments or physical senses.
According to the basic philosophical concept described in our book “The Philosophy of Time”, although abstract principles cannot be grasped in this universe through the medium of physics, at other levels, or in other universes, they are quite tangible “things”. The philosophical explanatory model according to which the Niveau élevé symbolism is aligned is quite simple:
a) There is not only this one, physical universe, which was created with the Big Bang and will perish with the Big Rip, but there are other worlds in parallel to this three-dimensional, physically structured universe which are structured other than through time and space.
b) The “differently structured” universes, which are not structured through space-time like ours, exist in parallel to our world. We cannot really say that they are present “at the same time”, because simultaneity is indeed part of the temporal structuring. And if another universe does not have time as a criterion for its structuring, and therefore this universe has no time whatsoever, then we cannot even speak of a “simultaneity” with our own universe. Nevertheless, we assume that, viewed with our temporal glasses, there are other universes beside our own, with a quite different structure.
c) Since the structures of the various universes do not overlap, since the other universes are therefore not “physically” structured, and thus have neither space nor time, they are invisible viewed from our own space-time universe. Using our instruments or senses we can only grasp things that have a spatial dimension and a temporal duration. Anything that has no space and no time remains hidden to us.
d) Those “parallel universes” may have consciousness, however, or it may be possible with the consciousness to create a bridge to those universes, or at least to pick up some elements from those universes with our sensory perception.
e) Thus abstract terms such as joy, longing, love, etc. are a translation of our spirit, our abstract faculty of thought, which relate to things that originate from other worlds, rather than our own. Clearly joy does not have a physical structure. It is not subject to gravity, it is not limited in terms of space, it has no weight or mass, etc. Since joy is not subject to a single one of the natural physical laws, it is quite clearly not an element indigenous to this physical universe, but belongs to another, non-physical world. Now our consciousness, which is able to extend beyond physical boundaries, is also able to sense the vibration of joy and incorporates it into our life in this world. But since joy has its roots in another universe, we only have very limited control over joy. Our only access to it is through our consciousness; thus we are also only controlled through our consciousness.
f) We therefore assume that, behind every “abstract concept” or “feeling”, there is an entirely tangible “Something” from a parallel universe. If we are able to assess this “Something” using our own “indigenous” concepts, it could be an entity, and therefore something animate, conscious or even something “inanimate”. But even without having the slightest notion of how the other planes or worlds are structured, this question is entirely irrelevant because “life” is a concept from this world which may be entirely missing from other worlds.
g) Ultimately it is not particularly important whether we view the abstract concepts as inexplicable phenomena from “this world”, or whether we make an attempt to explain them and say that these are “correspondences” that relate to something in other worlds. The basic idea of Niveau élevé is the exploration of the unknown inner space, the undiscovered depths of the self, as far as our consciousness allows. Thus the core message of the brand is something that is not entirely formulated in our mental terminology. As soon as the actual goal is located beyond the limits of what is known and formulated, we are also unable to define it. What is a definition? The concept derives from the root “fin” or end, limit. It means “limitation”. Definition is therefore the explanation of something by pointing out its limits. It depends on what we are seeking but, outside the currently known limits of our present knowledge, we may be entirely unable to define our goal.
With the decision to break out into the unknown, which is not in the external life but in those worlds whose only access appears to be located in the “self”, in our own consciousness, we thus expect the “unexpected” and seek something about which we only know that we know nothing about it. All that we have tangibly in our hands is our compulsion to set out for those other shores, the spirit of adventure to explore the unknown inner world, “Our-Self”.
The Niveau élevé brand is now at this stage of the pioneering phase; it intends to be a physical symbol, a correspondence in the tangible Here and Now, an aide mémoire to our own pioneering spirit. The watches of Niveau élevé, as symbolic of a new understanding of time or of the self, are naturally included in the crystallisation process of the basic concept. These are also still in the stage of becoming, of emergence. Thus a change in many aspects is not only possible, it is absolutely essential. New diamond cuts are being developed, new heavily symbolic materials such as crystalline osmium are being planned, new combinations of precious stones in the interior of the watch, new colour harmonies are being trialled, etc.
This stage of “initial manifestation” is often the most interesting phase of all. It is not only thrilling to discover the new, but the new vibe, the new concept, the sublime, mystical energy that is behind the whole, is generally manifested most clearly in the first contact. Sometimes we learn something, have contact with something that is totally Other, Sublime, Vast, but the vibe lessens after the first touch and we have to work for a long time to find it again and then establish it permanently in our consciousness. In any case, the path is the goal of a journey, not its end. This is particularly true when it is a journey that passes through one’s own consciousness.
It is also most exciting to participate in this phase of emergence, of the alchemy of the Niveau élevé phenomenon. Here the pioneering spirit experiences its own pioneering phase. In the time in which the inner concept that stands behind the watches of Niveau élevé manifests itself, something crystallises out on three levels. The basic conceptual and philosophical concept of the watch, the tangible outward appearance of the watch per se and the projects associated with the watch, such as the seawater desalination plant, the energy project, etc.
In this time, many prototypes of partial aspects of the watch are developed, lots of things are tested, research is carried out into many aspects, many of which are rejected, and a few then go into series production. To retain the whole intermediate stages of product development, to express or manifest all attempts at new aspects with the many tiny quirks and mishaps which ultimately lead to the right path, this would require a massive archive which would be neither sensible nor affordable. But to throw all the “almost perfect” watches into the bin goes against the sensitivities of our team. In any case, so much effort goes into the loving compositions and trials, so much excitement, so much expectation and ultimately so much charm and expressiveness. Even the still incomplete, the one still in the process of becoming, advancing, progressing, has a quite special attraction and value. So we decided to offer the friends of our brand the opportunity to participate in the development of our watches as they progress; rather than dismantling them, we place all those test models with little “quirks” on our website as “pioneer copies” and offer them at a reduced price. This enables the brand to reduce development costs and gives watch lovers the opportunity, for a small budget, to participate in the pioneer phase of the watch and contribute to the manifestation of the new. The “pioneer copies” are always one-off pieces, however. They are not reproducible and cannot be ordered later.