Xavier Dietlin, The Art of Showcases.
Xavier Dietlin and his small team have managed to secure the first and only position of designer and provider of luxury showcases to all the industries where ingenuity and quality are treasured.
Xavier Dietlin: "Tradition represents our roots and gives meaning to our existence. If this tradition knows how to adapt without selling its soul, it becomes eternal"
Xavier Dietlin comes from Swiss Jura mountains from where he kept his strong spirit. His family has a long tradition in building metallic constructions but he went initially to build a career in sports as a professional football player. After he left the pitch, Xavier Dietlin continued to turn his dreams into reality by entering a market where almost nobody before him thought about innovation seriously.
A showcase can mean so much more for the brand and the product inside but this means thinking outside the box. 10 years of experience next to his brother and sister secured a leading position in what regards the metallic showcases used in all the luxury industries, with a special accent for watches where almost all the brands turn to Xavier Dietlin for seating their watches with grace in their boutiques or at the fairs.
The first breakthrough came in 2005 when the ambitious showcases manufacturer designed the revolutionary Raptor for Hublot. It is a watch display without glass walls but as secure as a classic solution. The watch is hidden in a matter of tenths of seconds immediately as sensors detect any movement too close to the watch.
Today Xavier Dietlin has arrived to an amazing portfolio where he counts also museums and art projects besides watch and multinational groups like Mercedes- Benz or Huawei. His showcases are always challenging conventions and are meant to offer the public an original experience. Everything starts with listening directly to the clients story and trying to surprise, to intrigue and to provoke, all for winning the viewer’s attention and to make him or her crave for the object on display. While transforming the ordinary in extraordinary, a showcase has also to challenge technology in order to keep up with the times. But always aiming at the child inside all of us for whom playing remains a key element.
Albini Prassa's showroom in Bucharest using the free access displays from Dietlin.
How did you arrive at being the best display cases manufacturer in the world of watches?
To make money you have to produce in large quantities. Inventing such complex and creative displays condemns you to produce only a few copies by passion. I honestly never have money as my goal. Money is not the goal, money is the fuel! Other display suppliers like money much more than me. They will never do what I do. So I have no more competitors.
How much do you consider that an interactive display case represents out of the brand experience in a shop or during an event?
Today it is necessary to justify its physical displacement in a place. And if I move it is no longer as a spectator but as an actor. I want to trigger things on my own. Everything else can be done at home without leaving your chair. Life is too short for that.
People talk about quality a lot. What is quality for you?
Quality was one of Switzerland’s great strengths. But things have changed because today the quality is almost at the same level everywhere. From now on, quality is service: Be available everywhere and all the time for your customers. It is a rare quality. And quality goes hand in hand with creativity. It is useless to produce something that everyone else does, even of quality.
Watches are a lot about tradition. How do you remain compatible with tradition but still open your concepts to a new generation?
A tradition as beautiful as it is must know how to live with the times otherwise it dies. The young generation wants revolutions but with age it would like to rediscover the sense of the essential. Tradition represents our roots and gives meaning to our existence. If this tradition knows how to adapt without selling its soul, it becomes eternal. “There is nothing permanent except change” says Heraclitus.
Where do you see your mission going? More interaction, more experience, more emotion?
I have reached an age where I need to give meaning to what I do. The question is not how do you make a showcase, but why? “All the happiness in the world is in the unexpected” says Jean D’Ormesson. It is essential for me to surprise myself and people like surprises...
Tradition represents our roots and gives meaning to our existence. If this tradition knows how to adapt without selling its soul, it becomes eternal.
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