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Alexander James Stew

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Everything posted by Alexander James Stew

  1. It's very true that there exist a plethora of anonymous German bows out there especially between the 2 world wars but nevertheless I love the buzz of discovery when an expert is able to put a name to one.. Believe it or not that's my real motivation....although what Martin said is very true. It is much easier to value a confirmed named bow. However the financial aspect it is not my principal motivation . I simply love the voyage of discovery...
  2. Martin, Mr. Stewart will know from the cradle, all he needs to know about “mark ups” Dear Jacob, I do not think that is a pleasant remark to make and I do think you should show some more respect to those who have passed on. " Wally Stewart" as you call him made a very valuable contribution with his translation of the HAMMA book from German to english...and was very respected amongst the violin making circles in Cremona... Morassi, Conia, Portanti, Scrollavezza just to name a few...
  3. Dear Martin, I understand all that you are saying, but I can guarantee also that I am not trying to undermine anybody. I am genuinely fascinated with good German bows; named or not. Some I keep for myself others I get for my colleagues. I am not doing this out of a purely financial gain. The whole business of how a good bow can improve a fiddle also really fascinates me.The FRITZ MEINEL bow for example I wanted to share simply out of pride to be able to play on such a beautiful bow from a maker that perhaps many do not know. These threads and conversations can sometimes lead off onto a wrong tangent. Akin to a wrong turning o the map. Suddenly we find the destination is not the one we intended....
  4. Unfortunately my father Walter Stewart passed away back in 2006....but he certainly was always a larger than life character.
  5. Yes you have a point there. But this particular dealer more than over does it and has a tendency to denigrate those who manage to sell a product of similar quality for substantially less.
  6. That's him Jacob. Your dad is Wilfred Saunders?My father always spoke in glowing terms of Wilfred. Great fiddle maker!!!
  7. Dear Hempel, I just read your post, and would like to defend myself. I also like transparency...I am a violinist myself Associate Leader of the Portuguese Symphony Orchestra....so I play a bit.... I was brought up learning to respect the great tradition in German bowmaking. My father Walter James Stewart was on first name terms with some of the finest German bowmakers; Albert Nürnberger Hans Karl Schmidt Horst and Heinz Pfretzschner...just to mention a few. In fact he was responsible for being one of the first englishman to bring fine German bows onto the English market in the late 1960's through at the time Alan Wilkes who was running Guiviers in London. Karl Schmidt is not " SOMEONE...TO CHRISTEN A BOW for €400 ...he is one of the most respected authorities on German bows. He will only " christen" a bow if he is sure....The fact that Hempel and Mr Jacob Saunders choose to denigrate Mr Hans Karl Schmidt is in itself a big mystery to me. Yes there are a lot of anonymous german bows out there( not difficult considering bows only started to be stamped late in the 19th century) but there are also a lot of unamed german bows that Hans Karl Schmidt can identify like the FRITZ MEINEL bow I posted on Maestronet which Jacob chose to believe I purchased on E bay!!!! Hempel...I can appreciate the qualities of a good playing bow...and when I say I am giving colleagues the opportunity to buy decent bows at fair prices I mean the following... We have instrument dealers here in Portugal who buy Brazilian bows and put anything from 200% markup on the price. Criminal!!!!!!! I myself 5 years ago was a victim of this particular situation. I paid €2000 for a silver mounted brazilian bow which I later found out that one particular dealer here in Portugal had bought for €600. All I am doing is trying to readdress the balance... I am able to sell contemporary named silver-mounted german bows with generations of tradition in bowmaking between 1000-2000 euros... as well as some good unamed german bows. Nothing scandalous or unfair about that....So perhaps that is why Nancy or anyone else is not running away from me....
  8. Dear Martin, Many thanks for your words of wisdom that emanate from many years of experience.
  9. Sorry, really, my mistake then... You know Mathias got back to me on that question of the possible Nürnberger bow... Did you read what I wrote. I addressed you on the subject just to fill you in....very interesting development!
  10. The two frogs side by side... https://photos.app.goo.gl/XPVhK1GPhhr65LxXA
  11. Dear Martin, Just wanted to share....I might be getting closer to solving this particular conundrum! The Nürnberger connection makes sense. Mathias Wohlleber got back to me...and perhaps " lightening does strike in the same place twice!" Mathias mentioned that the head on the stick looks quite similar to FRITZ MEINEL.(who as you know worked in close association with Albert Nürnberger )And in fact if one consults the DEUTSCHE BOGENMACHER the Meinel example is very similar. Not the frog....but the stick and head. Now the frog from my " MEINEL" with the Hans Karl Schmidt certificate is also very similar to the frog in the photos I posted here . I have to say all this gives me quite a buzz! I think when Covid settles down Mathias suggested I could show him the bow in person. Will do that as I have yet to visit Berlin. Anyway just wanted to share. All the best.
  12. Dear Jacob, Good to see you in such good spirits. Must be because we gave the Ukraine a good beating yesterday.
  13. Dear Blank face, This is very true and the whole business to try and identify a bow is extremely enigmatic. However even the " known makers" were at one time or another employees and trainees...before they themselves became established. Look at the number of great french archetiers working for JTL or other houses. And the same goes to say for the German makers.It is not a label or stamp that identifies the hand that made it. Certain characteristics can be identified only through the expert knowledge of the working techniques of that particular maker. There was a situation once with a bow made by Tischer from Dresden. Stamped and a very nice bow. But it was not made by Tischer. The person looking at the bow knew that Tischer from Dresden had lost a hand, and that the bow in question was made by somebody with both hands. Albert Schuster lost an eye on the 1st world war and the way that the head is cut or specifically the chamfers on either side of the bow head is effected by this impairment. This whole business I find incredibly interesting. I think it is the intrinsic nature of the work that identifies the hand....which granted becomes confusing when more than one person is involved. I personally simply like or dislike something based on my own personal taste. I like the look and the work of this particular bow. And apparently it plays really well so all the better.If I can put a name to it then that will be an added bonus. . It still holds enough intrinsic value for myself to have acquired it.
  14. Many thanks Martin. Yes let's see what Mathias has to say....
  15. Nancy!! I know her. She plays in the Symphony Orchestra in Porto in the north of Portugal. We have worked together. Lovely lady!!!!
  16. These are friends of mine Wood. I am able to find bows that are good and a fair price. Believe it or not I have been helping them not exploiting. What's more they come to me. And they are happy.
  17. Take a closer closer look Jacob please... " This is not " some unstamped Markneukirchen bow..." And just for the record Carl Albert Nürnberger made a number of unstamped bows based on the F X Tourte model. This bow has absolutely nothing to do with the last bow I posted which granted is a run of the mill silver mounted Markneukirchen violin bow from between the wars....This is not the case ... even you can see the difference I am sure. Anyway I am waiting on Mathias Wohlleber to give me his feedback or is he another " Fred Bloggs" in your opinion?
  18. Actually Martin, on closer inspection I think my bow is closer to the next Nürnberger in the Deutsche Bogenmacher book. Carl Albert.It also appears to be based on the F X Tourte model. The rounded nose and slightly curved head-plate.Also quoting from the book, "Carl Nürnberger frequently used durable white mother of pearl for the slide and the eyes." which seems to be the case with my bow. Both examples ( from the book and my own) have a two piece heel-plate and the liner secured with 2 pins.... There also seems to be a similarity between the yellowish-brown pernambuco....of both bows. What do you think Martin? Food for thought? All the best
  19. Many thanks Martin for your input. I sent some photos to Mathias Wohlleber....maybe he will shed some light on the matter....still don't have the bow in my hand but apparently it plays incredibly well. 59 g
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