Rombach and Haas Modern Art Cuckoo Clocks – Merging Traditional and Modern

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BLOG-#2-Modern-Art-rombach-and-haas-filigree-black-34-2Before Rombach and Haas took up the challenge of making a modern art cuckoo clock, there was the one created by architect Pascal Tarabay. That was the first, almost a decade ago.

Since then, many versions have been produced by designers all over the world. This development was especially good for the clock lovers and interior decorators looking for a cuckoo to fit the sleekness of the modern motif.  And there’s plenty from which to choose. Many have geometric shapes, such as rhombuses, squares, cubes, pyramids, ovals, etc. Their surfaces are often flat and smooth with a minimalistic approach; a handful are featured with filigree or collage. Some are mono- colored while others are multicolored with abstract or figurative paintings, even text and phrases. As for the cases, they come in a variety of materials ranging from laser cut metal, glass, plastic, wood and even fabric covering. (The above photo is one of Rombach and Haas’s modern art cuckoo clocks with a mechanical movement).

No doubt, there’s a lot of variety and difference in designs, but almost every one of them, regardless of brand, shares one thing in common: they have a battery-powered quartz movement, not a mechanical weight driven one. Why? One obvious reason is that crafting a quartz powered cuckoo clock demands far less clock making skill than crafting a mechanical weight driven model with its complex and intricate workings of gears and bellows.

BLOG#2-Modern-Cuckoo-rhbb1111So, rather than attempt to build a mechanical version, the makers of modern art cuckoos have left that formidable task in the hands of Germany’s Black Forest clock masters. Here’s where Rombach and Haas comes in. Shortly after Pascal launched his designer cuckoo, Ingolf and Conny Haas had taken up the challenge and crafted their own modern versions, but with the traditional mechanical movement. The well qualified, fourth generation Rombach and Haas company has been making cuckoo clocks since 1894. Their modern art cuckoos are the only designer versions that pay homage to the centuries old tradition of mechanical clock making of the Black Forest.

Rombach-Haas-2--Cuckoo-Modern-SL15-2But why buy a weight driven mechanical modern art cuckoo instead of a less expensive, more convenient battery operated model that needs no winding? For one thing, some clock owners truly enjoy interacting with their cuckoo clock; they want the satisfaction of winding it and feeling the chains click away as they pull them down to lift up the weights. Some clock owners also prefer the rich mechanical cuckoo call produced by real bellows and pipes, instead of the prerecorded digital sound of the quartz powered models.

 There is still more to think about. If you’re looking for a clock you can pass on to your children or grandchildren, think “mechanical”. They’re a better long-term value and are more likely to become collector’s items and family heirlooms than quartz clocks. There’s a good reason. Centuries of development, clock making history and human labor all add to a clock’s value and appeal. Inside each mechanical cuckoo, heritage and tradition are alive and well–they’re embodied in the workings of the clock’s gears, escapement and all of its intricate mechanics and craftsmanship.

Modernity added to tradition? Now that’s a great merger.

Check our selection of Rombach and Haas Modern Art Cuckoo Clocks.

Photos:

Photo # 1 – Rombach and Haas Filigree Design 8-day wind cuckoo clock

Photo # 2 – Rombach and Haas Bamboo 1-day wind cuckoo clock

Photo # 3 – Rombach and Haas Simpleline 1-day wind cuckoo clock

Why Are Clocks Popular Heirlooms?

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heirloom clockAll Types of Heirlooms

When it comes to an heirloom, almost anything can qualify. It could be grandpa’s diploma tucked away in a special drawer or grandma’s pot roast recipe waiting to be cooked again or even a simple and unexpected thing like the ribbon your great aunt wore on the day of her wedding. But, did you know that, in popularity, clocks are in the top ten?

Why Clocks?

What makes them so popular? Think about it. They’re practical: clocks are heirlooms you can use. They’re beautiful: that means your home will be imbued with fine craftsmanship and visual entertainment. They’re visible: that means they’re usually in a prominent place in your home where you can see them and refer to them often, “what time is it?” Then there’s the ticking, the music, the chimes, and the dancers, the log cutters, the dumpling eaters and the beer drinkers, the dogs and the vines and the red-shuttered cottages. All that becoming a part of the daily rhythm of your family life. Yes, an heirloom clock passed down to you is special, indeed. It honors your family, helps you to gain a richer insight into the days of your ancestors, and continues the traditions that began generations ago.

BLOG#2-heritage-from-members.digis.netUnexpected Heirlooms

I could tell you about my own family heirlooms, but what I think will be of greater interest is what I had discovered many years ago and would later call my “heirloom extension phenomena.” What is that you might ask? Well, growing up my family regularly visited close friends. In their kitchen was a cuckoo clock and in the living room a grandfather clock. I still remember the beautiful and mysterious tones of the Westminster chimes and the charming cuckoo of the bird. These sounds somehow created a sense of stability and order in the atmosphere, and as a child I always looked forward to a visit to that home.

Years passed and the two clocks were given to their children and then just recently, to their children’s children. The stability and order those timepieces had lent to that home will now be passed on to the grandchildren’s home as they start their new families.

We had other heirlooms in our house when I was growing up, but not a clock. That’s where my “heirloom extension phenomena comes in.  I can explain it this way: even though it’s years later, I seem to be experiencing and participating in their family history, in their heirloom story. And it’s all because of those wonderful clocks.

Starting Your Own

But, what if you don’t have an heirloom clock or an “heirloom extension phenomena” carrying the stories and memorable events of your family or extended family? Well, your story can begin now because traditions don’t have to be started sixty years ago. A new, finely crafted clock can become an heirloom in the making, a keepsake by which you’ll be remembered. And your children and grandchildren will be glad you decided to begin the journey of your story.

Now look around your house. Most likely you have an heirloom of some type. But, wouldn’t it be nice to have a clock?

Photo Credits:
TOP: treasurechestofmemories.com

BOTTOM:  O’Neill Family

 

 

5 Good Reasons Why Clock Enthusiasts Are Enthusiastic

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BLOG#2rh8367_289x433Ah, the difference between a digital clock and an analog clock. Where are the animated dancers, the finely crafted wood carvings, the deep sonorous gongs and the dumpling eaters? Think about it. They’re seen and heard on the analog clocks. I’d rather get the time from a beautiful grandfather clock or a charming cuckoo clock than from the digital icon on my computer screen or iPad. Wouldn’t you? Maybe you’ve been thinking about getting a clock, but aren’t convinced yet that it’s a good idea.

Here are 5 reasons why clock enthusiasts are enthusiastic:

1. Tradition

Blog-tradition-polls_tradition_2258_517561_pollYes, analog clocks are passed down from generation to generation bringing with them their family history and the warmth of relationships. And, by the way, clock lovers, who have sometimes lost their family treasure, will purchase a clock today that is just like what their grandmother had. That reconnects them to their family heritage in a deep and personal way. And what if there isn’t a family heirloom to be passed down? You could start one today. It will be an heirloom in the making. Think of your children and their children who will remember you and enjoy the beauty of the clock you got started.

2. Decoration

BLOG-Hermle0803RoomSceneThis can be anything from filling that large wall with a chic over-sized clock or grouping a selection of smaller clocks to create a center of attention. Like a painting, a clock will beautify your decor. They’re works of art. You can bet they’ll add warmth, atmosphere and charm to your home. They’re versatile too, whether traditional or modern, large or small, for the table top or fireplace mantel, clocks bring movement and mirth to the air.

3. Relationship

BLOG#3relationship-300x225Here is where the fun is. Did you know how musical and moving a clock is? They’re almost like kinetic sculptures that you can interact with daily. They engage your senses and can fill your spirit. Listen to their sounds, feel the clicking in your fingers and hands as you wind them and admire the visual artistry of their craftsmanship. With their ticking, chiming, cuckoo-ing and swinging, they become a part of the hum of your home.

4. Expression

BLOG-#2-PaintBrushesWhat is your unique personality? Clocks let you express it with their variety of colors, shapes, textures, and sounds. There are fun clocks, bold clocks, stylish clocks, classic clocks, unusual clocks, chic and over-sized clocks–all with their own flavor and character.

 5. Conversation

BLOG-conversation#2-indexHaving friends or relatives over? The winsome characters, hand painting and woodwork, deep sonorous gongs and the intricate brass mechanisms seen through a clear casing, have been known to open many a conversation over a glass of sherry before the ring of the dinner bell, or with a cup of mint tea at dessert.

Convinced yet why clock enthusiasts are enthusiastic about clocks? If not, ask any clock lover and they’ll tell you–or even better, they’ll show you. And you just might catch the enthusiasm.

Photo Credits:

Cuckoo Clock: northcoastimports.com

Room Scene: hermleclock.com

Paint brushes: http://inspired2act.com