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1690 „Tuscan“ Stradivari - Treasures of Italian Violin Making vol 2


Urban Luthier
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  • 9 months later...

Thank you for posting that video.

As a piece of artistic sculpture, the Tuscan Strad is spectacular. I was especially taken with the shape of the arching, the precision of the purfling and that amazing curl in the back plate. Those fine grain features are so easily muddled without great varnishing technique.

As for the sound, granted it was played in a cavernous hall by a master violinist, but the range of dynamics and texture Biondi seemed to effortlessly draw form the instrument was incredible.

I thought his words near the end was interesting.... that we are currently living in a golden age of violin making. 

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This should spark some interesting conversation. There is a section of the video that shows the Tuscan fitting perfectly around the P form (19:19). The P-form is dated 1705, while the Tuscan is dated 1690! Either the date on the P-from was inscribed by someone else who got it wrong or there was more than one P-form in the Strad shop that has not survived. 

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2 hours ago, Urban Luthier said:

This should spark some interesting conversation. There is a section of the video that shows the Tuscan fitting perfectly around the P form (19:19). The P-form is dated 1705, while the Tuscan is dated 1690! Either the date on the P-from was inscribed by someone else who got it wrong or there was more than one P-form in the Strad shop that has not survived. 

I noted this too.

In fact, even from my comparisons P1705 form corresponds quite well, at least from photos, I'm curious to read the book to hear the conclusions that they have drawn out.

In my opinion P 1705 form is an evolution of P(b) form, the instruments that correspond to P 1705 earlier than that date could be made with the P(b) form shimmed, before redoing the new form definitively.

Even though 15 years sounds like a lot before deciding to make the new form....:)

 

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I like your theory Davide! Looking at the Pollins book, I suspect you are right: it does appear the Pb and P forms are very very close through the upper bout and the waist diverging in the lower bout area where the P form a little longer and wider.

Nice to see close ups of the belly in the video -- one doesn't need to be a dendrochronologist to see the fine grained spruce with the faint vertical markings likely comes from the same tree as the Medici viola and even the Archinto viola

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1 hour ago, Urban Luthier said:

Nice to see close ups of the belly in the video -- one doesn't need to be a dendrochronologist to see the fine grained spruce with the faint vertical markings likely comes from the same tree as the Medici viola and even the Archinto viola

Wrong, I'm afraid, neither ring patterns from these two violas match that of the Tuscan.

Yes they're fine grained spruce, but not from the same tree.

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22 minutes ago, D. Piolle said:

Once again the purfling look (more or less ) perpendicular to the surface of the fluting, on the picture below , at least. It looks like the purfling was inlaid after the fluting ( or part of it ) was done.

A subject discussed with maestro Sora some time ago.

 

Tuscan Medici flyer.png

Also nice to see a rare original upper block and note how it is shaped. Wide and flat, I like it!

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4 hours ago, D. Piolle said:

Once again the purfling look (more or less ) perpendicular to the surface of the fluting, on the picture below , at least. It looks like the purfling was inlaid after the fluting ( or part of it ) was done.

Yes I agree.  I have noticed this feature in a number of CT scans of Cremonese instruments.

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On 9/12/2017 at 11:09 PM, John Harte said:

Yes I agree.  I have noticed this feature in a number of CT scans of Cremonese instruments.

I don't agree that it is a consistent finding, even in this instrument. 

Looking carefully at the orientation of the black and white stripes of the purfling in the 3 spots shown, it appears that they are orientated differently suggesting that the angles are quirks of the knife cuts, perhaps based on handedness or the way the violin body is being held when working each area.

 

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