In case you weren’t aware, earlier this year, the mega-talented Pharrell Williams, who can add musician, philanthropist, fashion designer, entrepreneur and founder of beauty brand Humanrace to his resume, launched an online auction service, Joopiter, in an effort to sell off the hordes of luxury items he has accumulated over the last 20 years. Think items like a personalised Goyard Trunk, Letterman Jackets, sneakers and custom-made jewellery.

“I’m not going to sell furniture on StockX. I’m not going to sell, you know, 20-plus-carat diamond rings on [The] RealReal,” he told the Financial Times in September.

“Spiritually it’s a very rich experience, an enlightening experience, to let… stories go.”

But within the eleven storage units that currently hold these items – yes, you read that correctly – there’s one item that is significantly more interesting than most: an Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Watch 1 (CW1) that is one of fourteen designed as part of an “after-series” for the most important clients of the AP brand, Pharrell being one.

It’s that rare and significant that buddying artist/watch collector Frank Ocean – who is well known for his love of brands like Richard Mille and Rolex – knew it was a piece too good to pass up at auction. So Frank Ocean now owns Pharrell Williams’ super rare AP, which he paid a pretty penny for: US$218,750.

The history of the Royal Oak is well documented. Designed by the visionary watchmaker and designer Gérald Genta, the original Royal Oak was first released in 1972 as one of the first-ever steel sports watches on the market. But the timeline of this futuristic Royal Oak Concept Watch comes much later; 30 years later, in fact, upon the 30th anniversary of the Royal Oak collection. The CW1 was released in 2002 and consisted of 150 watches, with 14 unique examples made for friends of the brand. But when the CW1 launched, it took the Royal Oak line in a completely new direction, inevitably spawning a succession of ground-breaking concept follow-ups.

Looking at the CW1, you can see why Pharrell was so attracted to its design. As someone who is fascinated with the idea of space, when given the chance, Pharrell designed the CW1 to resemble an astronaut on the surface of Mars. The futuristic design offers two vertical bars on the dial, the one on the left designed to absorb shock and protect the tourbillon, and the one on the right designed to tell the wearer the power reserve. The dynamographe at top of the dial details how much torque is going to the mainspring.

All in all, this watch is immeasurably unique and a beautiful example of the extremely complex complications that AP deal with. Now, Frank Ocean can revel in its magic.

Frank Ocean