The sixth edition of WatchTime New York is less than a month away, and with more than 25 participating watch brands showcasing their latest novelties next month at Gotham Hall in Midtown Manhattan from October 22-24 – including a number of pieces. rare that the public will see for the first time – the excitement is growing. Famous Japanese watchmaker Seiko Joins the Party with the East Coast Debut of Its New U.S. Exclusive Prospex SLA053 and SLA059 “Seigaiha” editions.
The new models, which follow the exclusive announcement of sister brand Grand Seiko in the United States, each come from Seiko’s famous Prospex range of diving watches. The pair features a “Seigaiha” (or “blue ocean waves”) motif on their dials, in bright blue (SLA053) or deep burgundy (SLA059). Notably, the two follow another set of U.S.-exclusive models launched by Seiko in 2020, the Prospex Ice Divers (below), indicating the Japanese brand’s continued interest in producing special parts for the one of its most important markets.
The “Seigaiha” editions are inspired by and take their name from a type of Japanese art that appeared in the 6th century called Seigaiha. The style is best defined by the layering of concentric circles, which in Japanese culture has acquired special significance as a motif in art, fabrics, ceramics, and lacquer, each arched wave representing waves of luck, peace and good fortune, as well as power and resilience.
Each of the watches draws inspiration from other sources as well – the SLA053 with a blue dial of the ocean waves in moonlight and the SLA059 with a burgundy dial of the first rays of the sun lighting up the dark seas at dawn. Each piece in this regard is meant to evoke the role of the waxing and waning moon, as depicted in Shinto and Zen Buddhist traditions, according to Seiko, as a sign of enlightenment, dreams and spirituality.
Apart from these stylistic inspirations, both watches feature the familiar style of Prospex diving watches, wide at the wrist with 44.3mm in diameter by 15.4mm thick and water resistant to 300 meters. The case as a whole is very crisp, with the Blue Edition using a hard black coating to darken its steel; both are otherwise the same in their faceted angles, deeply toothed unidirectional ceramic bezel and distinctive crown at 4 o’clock.
The circular patterned layered dial is exposed behind a sapphire crystal, lending an artistic touch to the otherwise robust diver’s watch while taking nothing away from the high degree of readability and functionality for which the Prospex collection is known. The dial elements outside the Seigaiha circles are relatively straightforward: a curved outer ring for the minutes, large applied indexes, a date window at 3 o’clock, and a bold set of hands to indicate the time. Both versions of the watch are powered by the automatic 26-jewel 8L35, which beats at a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour and maintains a 50-hour power reserve.
Both “Seigaiha” watches will be available at retail exclusively in the United States, with the blue SLA053 available now, for $ 3,200 and limited to 500 editions, and the burgundy SLA059 coming out in fall 2021, priced at 3 $ 300 and no. limit. Each watch comes with a pair of matching cufflinks.
To learn more, you can visit Seiko here. And to see the US exclusives live and in person, in addition to so many other great watches launching this year, be sure to join us at WatchTime New York 2021 next month. To find out more and buy tickets, click here!