Benoît Mintiens tells the story of Ressence watches
Founded in 2010 by Benoît Mintiens, Resection which is on its design mission watches that awakens the senses and inspires wonder. Although on the quest to make timepieces even more without weatherthe Belgian brand’s products may seem like they throw a wrench into the works of traditional industry – just look at the still domed minimum TYPE 8 or a TYPE 1 with a dial decorated as if painting 1646 , for example – but Innovation of Ressence watches are the result of careful removal of any unnecessary part and feature of the watch. The quest is the purest expression of time. The attractive designs pair modern performances with modern aesthetics.
‘Resence is a good example of bold choices. The fine watch industry favors evolution over radical innovation. This limits creativity. Compared to that, we have complete freedom at Ressence,‘ explains Benoît Mintiens, founder and designer Resectionin conversation with designboom.
The Ressence TYPE 1 REV vessel watch draws inspiration from Philippe de Champaigne’s 1646 painting ‘Vanitas’
Read more about this project on designboom here
‘I didn’t know industrial design could be a job when I was young; that someone could get out of it alive,‘ said Benoît.
At the age of 18, Benoît sought to combine his two interests at the time – industrial design and sailing. He was training to be a naval engineer until his Dad told him it was possible to study design. After five years of studying industrial design in Antwerp, a successful degree and an internship in a renowned design consultancy in Belgium (Yellow Window formerly known as Enthoven Associates), Benoît was hired as one of the agency’s designers.
Ressence is on a mission to design watches that awaken the senses and inspire wonder
In design studios, creative people work on a wide range of products, businesses and technologies, and become specialized generalists where marketing, finance, production and, most importantly, human factors are disciplines that sustain the daily routine. These parameters – or the engines, as Benoît calls it – enabled him to get his own business off the ground and fly at Resection.
‘Good designers are taught to think in holistic environments and multidimensional problem solving‘ said Benoît.
The innovation of Ressence watches is driven by human-centered micro-ergonomics
‘Product design involves mixing together many ingredients – technical, functional and financial – but in the end, the products that make a difference are the ones that generate strong emotions and relationships. The products where one can feel the compassion behind a meticulous design process.‘ notes Benoît.
It is this understanding that makes the designer so skilled in both roles. It’s not romantic, Benoît admits, but it’s the reality of the design business.
Starting in 2010, Benoît created his own watch brand as he was at the intersection of all his interests in design
With this design and business background, Benoît set his sights on creating his own watch brand in 2010. This object was the intersection of all his interests in design and engineering. As in many start-ups, the project began with frustration. Benoît did not get the watch he had always dreamed of. He was struck by the lack of innovation in horology. He also knew he wanted to oversee the production himself to make sure every detail was right in place. So the whole story of Ressence began to unfold somewhere in the attic of his house. The brand was launched with three prototypes that left a lasting impression on the crowds at BaselWorld. A limited run of 50 pieces in the Zero Series confirmed Ressence’s place as the new and different maker on the scene.
‘Few products require as many ingredients as a watch. It has the dimensions, aesthetics and ergonomics as well as the expected ethical, social and security aspects. The technical aspects of watch design are so great that the designer has to be creative to balance the complexities,‘ explains the founder and designer.