Then Now Beyond“, an exhibition of temporality-themed design objects commissioned by The Hour Glass to celebrate its 40th birthday, opens on Nov 23 at the retailer’s salon Malmaison – but you probably won’t get to see at least one of the exhibits. Group MD Michael Tay reveals, somewhat cryptically: “Studio Wieki Somers has been developing an object that has never been done before and we are funding the R&D for it.

They’ve been working on it for a year, and I don’t think it’ll be ready in time. But we’ll be able to present their ideas and a working prototype, hopefully.”

Good thing visitors will be able to see the rest of the exhibits, created by some of today’s biggest names in art and design: Daniel Arsham, Marc Newson and Nendo. American artist and architect Arsham explores the notions of time with his works.

Then Now Beyond
One of the pieces in the exhibition, designed by Japanese studio Nendo.

(Related: The Hour Glass: 40 years in the business)

Having created an hourglass containing 21 million gold-coloured carbon nanoballs for The Hour Glass’ 30th anniversary, Australian industrial designer Newson now uses hand-crafted crystal and more than 2.8 million metallic nanoballs to reinterpret ancient time-measuring instruments.

And yes, there will be watches: The exhibition, which ends next Jan 31, will also showcase limited-edition pieces co-created with brands such as Audemars Piguet, De Bethune, MB&F, Tag Heuer and Longines.

(Related: Watch collector: Yu Chye Fong favours petite timepieces that pack a punch)


Malmaison by The Hour Glass. 270 Orchard Rd, #01-01