Sunday, June 5, 2011

G-Shock #24: The "Krink"

Today's article is a Guest article. I'm very excited and proud to write here that Maine wrote this article about the "Krink". I have this model myself too, but the way Maine portrait this model in words and photo's on WatchUSeek is really fantastic. I could have written a "Krink" article, but it would, in my experience, always be a watered down version of Maine's words.
I have to say, I didn’t have an instant attraction to this watch. Like many of the collaboration G-Shock designs which Casio releases, I was unfamiliar with the name “Krink”, so that didn’t mean anything to me. When I first saw it, I was still pretty sure that my next purchase would be a GW-3500. I noted on the Watchuseek G-Shock forum that the Krink was receiving positive comments, and then I forgot about it.
It was only after reading a particular 3-word phrase, that I suddenly understood what it was all about. (Actually, I misread it, but the effect was the same.) As a linguistically conservative chap, I don’t use the word “sick” to mean anything other than “ill”. So the phrase that entered my head when browsing a thread about the Krink was actually, “slick, minimalist piece”. But it did the trick anyway. Thanks, TraseUno :-)
The Krink G-Shock, or more precisely the DW-6900KR-8, is certainly a work of art. It has made my opinion of the DW-6900 do a complete u-turn. A couple of years ago, when I started to appreciate Gs again, the first modern G that I bought was the GW-6900. Thanks to this very site and Sjors’ article, my old DW-5600C finally had a companion. I liked the way that the three “eyes” were displaying useful information, and not just taking up space on the face. I didn’t think I’d ever buy a DW-6900 using module 1289, which I thought was simply outdated and unattractive.
But then I noticed the details which seem unique amongst Gs. The Krink has none of the writing around the inner bezel. The face is completely devoid of writing except for the Krink and Casio logos, and like the LCD is coated with a mirror layer. The legibility is really excellent – the digits themselves are black and not silvered, so I have no problem reading it from any angle.
The silvered theme continues with the bezel and strap, which are a sparkly silver resin printed with the Krink logo, and a nice touch is the transparent strap keeper, with the same logo but with reversed colours compared to the strap itself.
The logo is etched in to the caseback. All these little design details have a consistency which ensures that the whole watch is well-balanced, and a significant artistic step up from some of the really lazy collaboration designs which so frequently seem to appear. It has genuine design value. And as the icing on the cake, I was delighted to discover that it has a negative backlight, i.e. when the light button is pressed, only the digits themselves illuminate, not the whole LCD. I always love that.
The build quality is excellent as is to be expected, and I was particularly impressed by the alignment of the mirrored face and the LCD below it. They appear to be completely parallel, so that reflections of objects seamlessly match on both layers. If you can’t believe that a mirrored LCD can be so easy to read, do try and see one in real life for yourself. I am very picky about the legibility of my watches, to the point where I sold my MIMB Riseman, despite it being the coolest watch I’d ever seen. I couldn’t read it at a glance, so I never wore it. Trust me, this Krink is one legible watch.
So, who or what is Krink? After some quick research, I discovered that it is the brand name of an art supply company based in the USA. Founded by Craig Costello (known as “KR”) in New York, the company grew out of producing ink for himself and other graffiti artists, and the products now include inks and markers for both graffiti writers and other artists.
Significantly, Costello was known for using a home-made sparkly silver ink, from where the Krink G-Shock gets it unique look. The products are packaged and marketed in a very minimalist style, which further explains the style of the watch. And I must not forget to mention the Krink’s box and tin, both of which maintain the sparkly, silvered theme.
I have realised that I don’t usually compare G-Shocks to any artistic school or movement. I barely even compare them to other non-G watches, considering that they define a genre and form of watch which is unique. I have certain favourites, and of course there are others which don’t appeal to me so much, but that’s about it. Then when I read that fateful phrase, it suddenly hit me. Why couldn’t a G-Shock be minimalist? Other watches can be designed with influences from an artistic movement, for example, the Antea by Stowa – the epitome of a Bauhaus-styled watch.
I have always preferred Minimalist art. Whenever I visit a city for the first time, I head straight for its contemporary art galleries and museums. My favourite artists are Callum Innes, Mark Rothko, Dan Flavin, Donald Judd, and so on. I like art to be a catalyst for my thoughts, not to shout its ideas into my head. So the minimalist style of the DW-6900KR is perfect for me. It’s my favourite G as a result.


TR853-1™ said...

Great article and pics Maine, I didn't know my 'minimalist' phrase influenced you to get this watch. Yes i still stand by those words to describe this model, sick minimalist. Whatever it is.. I can see you did not regret it and appreciate it for its sheer simplicity. I love mine to bits too! Congrats and wear this sick watch in good health! LOL!


Danny Handsome said...

This watch is awesome. I've taken it apart to install a diamond face and was amazed to see the Krink logo is actually in the crystal and not the face! So even with an afermarket face I still get the Krink logo. Even though it is esthetically minimal I was able to add a contrast in it with very detailed face.

Alan From New York said...

Instead of "minimalist," the word that entered my mind was, "understated," a description that seldom applies to G-Shocks.

It is a (dubious) testimony that the Krink is the only DW-6900 I own. So far.

Suzaidee said...

lately I have this voice in my head calling me to grab this model. Thank you for this great post. Even though it was posted in 2011, for me this is one of the best review for G-Shock Krink :)