Year of the Tiger as a reason to create a new Wristmon
On February 1, 2022, the Year of the Tiger starts. The tiger, according to Chinese beliefs, is an unpredictable creature. Konstantin Chaykin also seeks to get away from predictability, and this time he looked for associations with prehistoric times. According to palaeontologists, armed with ultra-modern means of radiological analysis, about ten thousand years ago the last sabre-toothed tigers, or, according to the generally accepted classification, smilodons, disappeared from the American continent. At the same time, the first people settled in America, coming along the Bering land bridge from Asia. Exactly 180 years ago – in 1842 – these fossil monsters were named ‘smilodon’ by their discoverer, the Danish palaeontologist Peter Wilhelm Lund. The generally accepted interpretation of this name is that it was formed by Lund from the ancient Greek words ‘smilo’ (σμίλη; double-edged knife) and ‘odontos’ (οδόντος; tooth). The name attracted Konstantin Chaykin due to its unexpected association with the history of his watch collection – the ancient Greek word ‘smilo’ had one more meaning: ’smile’. In fact, Smile was the working title of the anthropomorphic dial watch project, chosen by him in 2016. Thanks to this project, the Joker watch and the entire collection of Wristmons appeared.
The tiger in Chinese mythology is a dominating, bold, wayward creature, traits clearly manifested in the Smilodon project, which dictates its own rules. The signature lunar smile of the Joker and many other Wristmons has been replaced by a fanged mouth, which is framed by the powerful sabre-shaped fangs which gave the name to the prehistoric predator. When night falls, the movable jaws close on the dial, hiding a stylized image of a petroglyph drawn as an extinct animal – one of those that the smilodon once hunted. In these petroglyphs, Konstantin Chaykin has encoded the names of the days of the week. In the morning, the jaws open to reveal a petroglyph for the new day – the designation of the coming day of the week. Chaykin’s Smilodon swallows a new animal every day, just as in ancient Greek myths the god Uranus, aka Kronos, who at one time became the character of Konstantin Chaykin’s Carpe Diem watch, devoured his children.
Camelops, mammoth, mastodon... The petroglyphs on the dial of the Smilodon
watch are completed by a man, depicted by Konstantin Chaykin as the symbol of Sunday, the seventh day of the creation of the world according to the Old Testament (although the owner of the watch is free to decide which petroglyph to start counting the days of the week from). ‘Memento mori’ is the message of the Russian master: all six extinct animals chosen by him can be called the personifications of power, the ability to survive, the successful development of their ecological niche, and yet they all disappeared from the face of the Earth. Is that the fate that awaits the human race? Let there be a version that it was the colonization of America that accelerated the processes that led to the extinction of these and many other species.