Is That Watch Made of Cardboard?

Using humble materials, Gabe Lau, a Hong Kong artist, makes his own versions of high-end Swiss timepieces to have “a bit more fun.”

HONG KONG — In a Starbucks in Kwun Tong, one of this city’s waterfront industrial districts, Gabe Lau pulled a small black box from his bag and emptied its contents on the table.

Out tumbled what, for an instant, appeared to be a king’s ransom of vintage Rolexes, Omega Speedmasters and Cartier Crashes. But a second look showed that each piece had been painstakingly constructed from humble materials like corrugated cardboard and plastic wrap and then exuberantly detailed in acrylic paint and ink.

Mr. Lau’s creations aren’t copies, but

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