A rendering of Cartier's new Highland Park Village boutique.
Lady Diana wearing her Tank watch.
Andy Warhol wearing his Tank watch in a self portrait.
Catherine Deneuve wearing her Cartier Tank.
You are the company you keep — and there are few more exclusive cliques than those who have kept Cartier’s Tank close at hand since its inception 100 years ago. A look at the wearers of the iconic watch, with its understated design and unisex appeal, is the stuff of a rarified history lesson.
General John Pershing, the American World War I hero, sported one of the first Tanks, a gift from Louis Cartier himself in 1918. Gary Cooper and Catherine Deneuve both counted a Tank as their watch of choice. Andy Warhol wore his for status. “I really don’t wear it to tell the time,” he said, admitting he had never once wound it. And fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent and the late Diana, Princess of Wales, both sought Cartier’s Tank for its proud look and purity.
This month, in celebration of the Tank’s centennial, Cartier has released four new iterations of its classic collection: The Tank Louis Cartier, first created in 1922, now available in pink- or white-gold face options for ladies; the Tank Française, with its steel bracelet and reconfigured side brancards, set with brilliant-cut diamonds and dotted with a sapphire cabochon on the winding crown; in a rounded, compact update on the circa-1921 Tank Cintrée, the new Tank Américaine makes a modernist, subtle statement; that historic Tank Cintrée, one of Cartier’s first watches, is reimagined in two styles — pink gold and platinum — with a transparent skeleton design that exposes the watch’s overlapping gears and mechanical complexities.
Timed to the Tank’s revival is the opening of Cartier’s Highland Park Village boutique, making its grand entrée this Friday, September 1 after relocating from NorthPark Center.
The new boutique, which counts Tom Ford as its neighbor, reflects the style of French architect, scenographer, designer, draftsman, and painter Bruno Moinard — the master behind the interiors of hundreds of Cartier boutiques, including flagships in Milan and New York, and its famous address on the Champs-Élysées. Locally, Gensler Architecture spearheaded the project, and the result is a space that gleams with bronze and gold, leather detailing, and a pair of stunning chandeliers in the Jewelry Salon.
More than 5,000 square feet, the new store is decidedly larger than its former location and includes Cartier’s full range of jewelry collections, including Love, Panthère de Cartier, Juste un Clou, Trinity de Cartier, and Cactus de Cartier, as well as leather goods, fragrance, stationery, and engagement rings.
The Watch Salon boasts timepieces from Cartier’s Santos de Cartier, Ballon Bleu de Cartier, Clé de Cartier, and Drive de Cartier collections. And, of course, the second Cartier’s new doors open, a range of the exceptional, newfangled Tanks will be in store.