Dial painting, or to use the technical term japanning, is an art form in its own right and today reserved almost exclusively for fine grandfather clocks.

The technique became very popular in the late 18th Century and early examples can be recognised by the simplicity of the designs and use of floral motifs. In the early 19th Century, shells, geometric patterns, local scenes and historical events became the fashion and greatly enhanced the decorative appeal of grandfather clocks. Comitti’s artists continue to create painted dials using traditional methods and techniques. The dial plate is given an enamel finish that is screen printed with the numerals before the artist adds the decorative detail. Using acrylic paints and very fine brushes the art work is added to the corners, arch and moon phase or automata.

Each dial is unique and signed by the artist and Comitti can offer a bespoke service to create a dial decorated with the subjects of your choice.

View Comitti’s hand painted dials