Yiran Qian – Design of the Eye of the Storm Watch

Mechanical watches (pocket and wrist type) were invented a long time ago to keep track of time and thus manage daily chores / appointments efficiently. Its application spread to other areas over time. Soldiers used wrist watches during World War I to synchronize various maneuvers and even time their attacks based on this synchronicity. Fighter pilots used its advanced complications, such as the chronograph and stopwatch, for similar purposes. Divers and submariners later joined in, extracting data from the device’s unidirectional rotating bezel.

As previously stated, it all began with a pocket watch. Its transformation into a wrist accessory was quick, but it was limited to the fairer gender. Yes, the first wristwatch was created in 1868 by Swiss watchmaker Patek Philippe for Countess Koscowicz of Hungary. Most brands at the time thought it was amusing, and a product that didn’t really complement masculinity.

Today, both men and women wear these enticing timepieces on their wrists with equal zeal. However, the heart and soul of a wrist watch have not changed in decades. The majority of them use quartz or mechanical movements. Nonetheless, designers from all over the world have surprised and sometimes shocked watch enthusiasts with their “out of the box” facial designs.

One such person is Yiran Qian, a Chinese-born, German-based product designer. His critically acclaimed “Eye of the Storm” design took the world of horology by storm, pun intended, and earned him the red dot award for ‘design concept 2010’.

What makes this watch so unique? Its “see through” design is the answer. The “Eye of the Storm” has a dark bezel and a naked, transparent circular window in the center. This approach to minimalist design is not new. Many designers in the past have followed the same path and created products that have changed the way we perceive time.

Because of its faceless construction, the “Eye of the Storm” appears intriguing. From a distance, it appears to be a bracelet, rather than a wristwatch. Only when the non-intrusive button is pressed does the rim illuminate in two distinct locations, displaying the hour and minute in fluorescent color, typically orange, green, or blue.

Furthermore, the absence of a metal base plate and the use of native components make it skin-friendly, cost-effective, and lightweight. These characteristics make it one of the best design concepts of the decade. But why is it called the Eye of the Storm? The void it creates is the answer. It reflects a sense of destructive stillness that is associated with “real” storms. If you stare at it long enough, you will be mesmerized by its silence and its seamless construction, which only has a small crown on one side.

Aside from this, many other designs have revolutionized the wristwatch industry. Poolkart sells some of these intriguing products.