Angus Davies discusses Fiona Krüger, the highly talented Scottish artisan who has become known for designing eye-catching skull-themed timepieces.
This feature provides an insight into Fiona Krüger’s background and provides an overview of the various watches she has created to date.
Fiona Krüger Skull
It must have looked a strange sight, my huge torso stood adjacent the diminutive frame of the Scottish artisan, Fiona Krüger, at Baselworld 2016. Fiona is the founder of the eponymous watch brand, famed for crafting skull-themed timepieces and, despite our obvious physical differences, I readily warmed to her, sharing her love for horology. Moreover, I found Krüger’s passion for art and design, as well as her effervescent demeanour, very endearing. Fiona is an individual who brims with ideas and her notable zeal verges on the contagious.
Fiona studied Fine Art at university and, thereafter, chose to continue her education researching ‘product design for the luxury industry’, culminating in the attainment of a masters degree from ECAL in Switzerland. The Scot now lives in the Alsace region, conveniently close to the Swiss border. It is here that she pens ingenious designs, destined to wow would-be purchasers with their breathtaking creativity.
Fiona Krüger Petit Skull (Blue)
The ‘skull watch’ is a genre of timepiece which Fiona Krüger has very much made her own. The concept of the ‘skull watch’ has been around for many years. Indeed, it is reputed that prior to her untimely death, Mary, Queen of Scots commissioned a silver skull watch. Moreover, it is alleged that just before her beheading, Mary, Queen of Scots gave said watch to one of her maids of honour, Mary Seaton.
Certainly, the underlying rationale for skull watches is to remind the wearer that time is precious, moments are too fleeting and that life should be enjoyed to its full potential. Indeed, mortality and time are like two entwined bedfellows, perpetually linked in close embrace.
In some cultures, mortality is celebrated. For example, in Mexico, ‘Dia de Los Muertos’, the day of the dead, is a holiday celebrated on the 1st November. The dead are celebrated with festivals and lively celebrations. There is a distinct absence of melancholia, everyone parties with elaborately painted faces, eager to recognise that death is the inevitable consequence of life.
Fiona Krüger, drawing on the energy of ‘Dia de Los Muertos’ has conceived several timepieces, each suffused with a magnificent degree of vibrancy. There is nothing mournful or macabre about her designs, on the contrary, they fizz with vitality and crave attention with their bold originality.
Fiona Krüger Celebration Skull
Each work of horological art produced by Fiona Krüger employs Swiss watchmaking know-how to animate the hands of time, invariably floating above a notably colourful dial canvas. And, sometimes they can be incredibly colourful dials indeed. The dial vista of the ‘Celebration Skull’ is suffused with eye-searing lacquered shades and luminescent detail. Presented in a gleaming stainless steel case with a temperate leather strap, it is difficult not to smile at the joyful face of this Fiona Krüger timepiece.
Fiona Krüger Black Skull
Fiona’s artistic prowess has not been limited merely to the dial, she has bestowed her expressive ideas to the movements as well. The Skull and Black Skull embrace the age-old skill of skeletonised dials to reveal elaborate layers, decorated with detail, mimicking the aesthetics of the movement beneath.
Fiona Krüger may be young but, be under no misapprehension, her profound knowledge of design is impressive. With each deft stroke of an HB pencil, she conceives fascinating creations which are deserving of column-inches in the press. I concede that her thought-provoking designs may not be to everyone’s taste, that is the price for not ‘playing it safe’ but I for one hope she continues to prosper and reign supreme in the domain of skull watches.