In March, the launch of the first Swatch Art Special, designed by Kiki Picasso, at the Georges Pompidou Centre in Paris (France).
In May, the second Swatch Street Painting Performance takes place at London’s Covent Garden (UK).
In June, some 65 European artists make their way to Basel (Switzerland) for the third Swatch Street Painting Performance.
In September, Swatch takes part in “Andre Logan’s Alternative Miss World Show”. The show is not about beauty, it's about transformation, and when it comes to costumes, absolutely anything goes.
Following the merger of ASUAG and SSIH in 1983 (Société Suisse pour l’Industrie Horlogère SA), the new firm is named SMH (Société Suisse de Microélectronique et d’Horlogerie SA)
The ten-millionth Swatch watch is manufactured in the fall. Swatch accompanies the British New-Wave Band, “Thompson Twins” on their concert tour.
Limelight, the first plastic watch set with genuine diamonds, is launched in Los Angeles (USA).
Swatch leaves its mark on the history of time with the transparent Jelly Fish and fashion that ticks, the Raspberry,Ice Mint and Banana models in the fragrant Granita di Fruta series (the watches actually smell like banana, raspberry and mint), becoming the fi rst brand to make watches a stylish fashion accessory.
French artist Kiki Picasso, whose real name is Christian Chapiron, is a graphic designer, painter and video artist. He is associated with the avant-garde arts and action group called “Bazooka”, which produced many brightly coloured illustrations, cartoons, and low-fi publications, or “zines”, that borrowed heavily from Dada, squatter culture and political activist movements. His work is known for its clever treatment of themes of image and communication, and he is also famous for his early performance and pioneering video work, as well as for his work for Swatch. Swatch founder Nicolas G. Hayek makes the announcement at the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, Switzerland.
Picasso’s Kiki (GZ008) kicked off the story of Swatch and Art with a 140-piece edition, each with diff erent colours. The graphically sophisticated design fi ts colours together like an unfinished screen print, suggesting the layers of image and meaning that clutter the contemporary world. The image is absent a few colour fi elds : the white spaces produce the carefully cut and structured effect of a stained-glass window with some panels clear to the light. The figurative representation on the dial is contemporary in style and perspective, with a graphic novel-like rendition of a face and a post-modern jumble of lines and forms fanned out around it.
Jelly Fish Andrew logan (GK100AL) is an enchanting watch that looks like a magical, time-keeping sea creature, a half-robot mermaid’s purse shining from fantastical depths underwater. In glittery grey-black, with the artist’s signature in sea anemone blue, this engaging, unusual watch is shaped like a rough, soft fi sh and made of a jelly-like silicone rubber (the form of the watch doubles up its name). With a quintessentially Brit-punk touch, the piece has exposed watchworks and the unique quality of seeming to be hand-made, exquisite evidence of the masterful hand of this intriguing artist.
Freestyle skiing is discovered as an ideal sport, representing the common philosophy of a fun, trendy and nonconformist lifestyle. Swatch becomes main sponsor of the FIS Freestyle Ski World Cup for all 85∕86 competitions for a total of 9 competitions (3 Overseas and 6 European), with the highlight being the fi rst FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships taking place in Tignes (France) in 1986. At the time, “freestyle skiing” consists of 3 disciplines : mogul skiing, aerial skiing and ski ballet (later known as “Acro”).
Swatch sponsors the fi rst Snowboard World Championships in Breckenridge, Colorado (USA).