What do a Swiss luxury watchmaker and a London-based tattoo artist have in common?

They’re both Swiss at least. Nyon-based watch label Hublot this week announced its collaboration with Maxime Büchi (the Lausanne-born tattoo artist and founder of east London studio Sang Bleu) with the unveiling of a glass and metal sculpture that hints at a forthcoming collaborative watch design.

It’s a bold move – even young Swiss luxury watch brands (Hublot was founded in 1980) aren’t exactly a natural fit for body art. Then again, there are few things more important to watchmakers than time-honoured tradition – and tattooing (dating back to Neolithic times at least) has that in spades.

Hublot was drawn to Büchi owing to his design background – a graphic designer and typographer, he studied art and design at ECAL before honing his skill under the mentorship of legendary tattoo artist Filip Leu – as well as his East London fashion caché.

“Passion is an engine that drives us to create and move forward,” said Jean-Claude Biver, chairman of Hublot, of the partnership. “I love Maxime Büchi’s audacity, his courage as an initiator and his atypical background. He believed in his dreams and fought hard to accomplish them.”

Stay tuned for the ‘statement’ watch that’s set to drop in April.