Helios, wearing a crown of sunbeams, personifies the Sun. He is the
son of Titan and appears in countless mythological accounts often also
featuring Ulysse and Zeus… His monumental statue towered over the
port of Rhodes.
Each hour is represented by a radioconcentric sunbeam, i.e. starting from the centre and radiating
towards the edge of the dial. The twelve sunbeams show the path of the sun on the dial while
indicating the hour to come and the past hour.
At mid-day, all the sunbeams are golden to represent daylight. At that precise moment, the dial
represents the sun at its zenith. As time passes, the rays become black, one after another, clockwise;
the dial darkens and announces oncoming night.Midnight is represented by twelve dark beams
reflecting in the night. To symbolise the return to light, the sunbeams take turns to pivot again until
mid-day, thus completing a full 24 hour cycle.
Telling the time remains instinctive. Each hour keeps its conventional position and the minutes are
indicated by a central cartouche fitted with an index that completes a revolution on the fixed minute
disc.The display maintains the conventional angular gap of a watch for instinctive reading.
The whole complication mechanism is enclosed in the central 12 mm diameter and 5 mm high case
which contains no fewer than 100 parts, including 24 rubies which will activate the hour’s jumping
Example: at 3.30 p.m., the first three beams are black and the minute indicator points to 6 o’clock, as
on a conventional dial. The conventional angular gap between 3 o’clock and 30 minutes is thus
maintained.Herein lies the feat accomplished by Frédéric Jouvenot; having maintained conventional
reading of the dial with a revolutionary hour display system.