Follow-Up on Edition Numbering and the Marc Newson Hourglass

Small point of follow-up regarding my post the other day about Hodinkee’s $12,000 hourglass designed by Marc Newson. I wrote:

I do find it odd that every unit is numbered “1/100” rather than giving each piece a unique number.

I later clarified that to:

I do find it odd that every unit is numbered “1/100” rather than giving each piece a unique number — “1/100”, “2/100”, … “100/100”.

But I keep getting email about this. I am aware that this is how edition numbering works:

Edition Number: A fraction found on the bottom left hand corner of a print. The top number is the sequence in the edition; the bottom number is the total number of prints in the edition. The number appears as a fraction usually in the lower left of the print. For instance the edition number 25/50 means that it is print number 25 out of a total edition of 50.

That’s exactly what I think Hodinkee should be doing with these hourglasses, but from their own description, they’re not:

The Marc Newson Hourglass for Hodinkee is a limited edition of 100 pieces. Each is numbered “1 of 100” just below the “Hodinkee” signature on one side, with Marc Newson’s signature on the opposite side.

That says to me that all 100 pieces are numbered “1 of 100”. My guess is that the nature of the glass makes it difficult to print a unique number on each piece, but for $12,000 I would expect no expense to be spared. Also, when you label each piece with a unique number, owners of the pieces can feel more confident that theirs is unique. E.g. if it were ever discovered that two of them were labeled “12/100”, you would know something fishy is going on. I don’t think Hodinkee is secretly selling more than 100 of these, I’m just pointing out why it would be nicer if they were sequentially numbered.

Friday, 26 May 2017