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Watches of Switzerland announces holiday partnership with contemporary artist Olivia Steele

Artist Olivia Steele: The acclaimed visual artist will create 4 one-of-a-kind neon artworks to be installed at Watches of Switzerland’s US locations

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New York, NY – In a continuation of its pioneering approach to retail, Watches of Switzerland is proud to announce a partnership with contemporary visual artist Olivia Steele for its 2020 holiday campaign. The premier luxury watch retailer has tapped the 35-year old artist, whose style of expression is presented in the medium of hand-blown glass filled with neon gas, to be the creative drive behind an integrated holiday visual merchandising and marketing campaign. Steele will create 4 unique artworks that will each be installed at a different Watches of Switzerland retail boutique across the country. Often using thought-provoking, witty messages that leave much space for interpretation, each of the custom artworks will aptly read “Here For A Good Time”.

"At Watches of Switzerland we strive to be disruptive gamechangers and that is exactly what Olivia Steele embodies. Olivia’s refreshing irreverence for the status quo perfectly aligns with the Watches of Switzerland ethos and we are thrilled to have her bring her distinct and recognizable artistry to our holiday campaign"

David Hurley, EVP of The Watches of Switzerland Group US

“As I became familiar with Watches of Switzerland, the synergies in our philosophy became evident,” says Olivia Steele. She continues, “I find art to be a very practical tool to navigate this thing called life and the same can be said for a watch. Intricate, complex and beautiful by design but with a simple purpose based in practicality. I am thrilled to be partnering with Watches of Switzerland and creating art that represents our shared trailblazing spirit.”                                                               

Championing the arts has become a cornerstone of Watches of Switzerland’s rule-breaking approach to luxury retail, and the announcement of Watches of Switzerland’s holiday partnership with Steele is the latest in an ongoing commitment made by the company to bring together the worlds of horology and contemporary art.  Beginning with the opening of its Soho flagship, Watches of Switzerland forged a partnership with the renowned non-profit arts foundation, Aperture, to curate a continually rotating exhibition of contemporary photography within the space—reinforcing the importance of the neighborhood’s historic connection to the art world.  In 2019, Watches of Switzerland went on to partner with celebrated video artist, Marco Brambilla, who debuted his multimedia masterpiece, “Crystal Observatory”, in celebration of the brand’s highly anticipated Hudson Yards boutique opening. 

As part of the inventive partnership with Steele, Watches of Switzerland’s website will feature a holiday gift guide pairing the artist’s notable phrases with her favorite timepieces. In addition to creating and installing the commissioned neon pieces, Steele’s art will become the holiday campaign for Watches of Switzerland and utilized for 360 marketing purposes across social, web, and client facing collateral. Along with the “Here For A Good Time” artworks, Steele will be debuting her new video series exclusively with Watches of Switzerland. Showcased at the SoHo, Hudson Yards and Las Vegas locations, the video series titled, “I Still Love You”, “You Are Not Alone”, and “Kaleidoscope” (in partnership with Natasha Tomchin) features a first-of-its kind compilation of striking fire sculptures as an evolution to Steele’s illuminated sentiments. Shot at sunrise and sunset in front of James Turell’s iconic Roden Crater in Arizona, the long-form recordings feature hand bent iron tubing filled with propane gas in the form of her trademark handwritten script. On display until mid-February, the installments can be seen at Watches of Switzerland’s boutiques in SoHo, Hudson Yards, Encore Boston, and Wynn Las Vegas. After the holiday season, Watches of Switzerland will be auctioning off one of the artworks with proceeds going to a charity chosen in partnership with Steele.

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