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Jacob and other ID artists,

Where does Turin fit in all of this? I have a violin here which has very similar blocks to the OP's and a Carlo Guadagnini label. Sorry no interior pictures but the size profile etc look very similar. A couple of people have seen this and are fairly confused by it. Would early 19th century Turinese have followed the French construction methods? BTW The varnish on the scroll seems very different under black light than the rest of the fiddle.

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Sorry folks I should have done this as two threads.

First I am soliciting ideas about the ID of this fiddle which I am told was certified as C Guad in Germany. Two  people have seen the fiddle or the photos here in the states and the better of the two said he didn't recognize it and the other that it was possibly a early 20th century Italian fake job utilizing wormy wood etc . If anyone has any clues about this one please put them up.

Secondly when I saw the extended concave blocks on this which seem to be exactly what Jacob and Blank Face were describing as 19th century BOB French  I started wondering if that method showed up in Turin along with the other French influences in violin making during the 19th century and if so how early. 

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Like I wrote in another thread yet, please don't quote me that I told every rounded corner block is french; it was meant as a distinction between inside mould blocks and others only, as an answer to Martins consideration about particular schools. (though they are typical for the older french construction, but not exclusively).

The OP appears to be heavily overcoated and possibly overworked, so it might be hard to find out anything significant. But I wouldn't buy it as a Guadagnini anyway.<_<

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It's not for sale at all and as I said nobody  on this side of the ocean has suggested it is Turinese.

It does seem to have the corner blocks extending far into the C's which prompted me to wonder if, when or  how much that the French construction methods showed up in Turin where there was an influx of French workman. Do you see any chance that this instrument is French? No agenda here other than looking for information.

The varnish has certainly been either messed with to a large degree or perhaps, as one of the experts suggested, was originally made to look like an older instrument which had been messed with. It's an odd violin for sure hence the questions.

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1 hour ago, nathan slobodkin said:

 

It does seem to have the corner blocks extending far into the C's which prompted me to wonder if, when or  how much that the French construction methods showed up in Turin where there was an influx of French workman. Do you see any chance that this instrument is French?

With this feature (corner blocks longer in the C bouts) I would certainly assume that it's french. There are some early 19th century Mirecourt models very similar, a "Mathieu" branded is actually in Martin's shop^_^, and I once had a very similar. The LOB would be probably more than 360 mm and the belonging of the scroll would be a big question.

OTOH, why should it have to do anything to do with Torino, except for  the fake label? In my (very limited) understanding, the Southern France-Piemontese connection was more a thing related to the school of Pressenda,  with inside  or outside mould constructions, and the OP violin doesn't look like something from this school in my eyes.

 

 

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As everyone has said, difficult to assess a fiddle in this kind of reworked condition ... if you asked me if it was French I would say "why not" but without much conviction ...

The edges, corners and button seem to be so smoothed over it's hard to know what they were like originally, and the varnish can't tell us much. A dendro might give some regional clues.

With regard to the connection between France and Turin, that's a nice and interesting question! It certainly pre-dates Pressenda, who was after all an apprentice in the Lété & Denis workshop. Joseph Calot, an apprentice of Lupot, was a close collaborator of Pressenda's ... but I don't know if the Turin construction style derived from early Mirecourt or Lupot (or neither).

 

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2 hours ago, martin swan said:

 

With regard to the connection between France and Turin, that's a nice and interesting question! It certainly pre-dates Pressenda, who was after all an apprentice in the Lété & Denis workshop. Joseph Calot, an apprentice of Lupot, was a close collaborator of Pressenda's ... but I don't know if the Turin construction style derived from early Mirecourt or Lupot (or neither).

 

There's an excellent and detailled essay about Turin making and it's connection to France by Phillip J. Kass for Tarisio/Cozio, which I re-read now at this occasion.

To make a long story short, in fact making in Piemont (due to the french regency in this region) was in it's early days strongly influenced by french and flemish makings, not Cremonese (though they adapted the Amati models), using a bob method with ribs inserted into channels of the bottom. There were Cattenar, Cappa or Celonatio working this way. But this tradition was finished in 1770, leaving room for JB Guadagnini introducing the Cremonese method, but also a bit later for some genuine french makers like Lete using the new developed outside mould construction, which later was continued by Lete's pupil Pressenda, too.

According to this informations we had to assume that the OP was made before 1770 (very unlikely IMO) or it can't have any relation to Turin as long as it's constructed as described. This would answer the OP question.

 

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3 hours ago, Blank face said:

There's an excellent and detailled essay about Turin making and it's connection to France by Phillip J. Kass for Tarisio/Cozio, which I re-read now at this occasion.

To make a long story short, in fact making in Piemont (due to the french regency in this region) was in it's early days strongly influenced by french and flemish makings, not Cremonese (though they adapted the Amati models), using a bob method with ribs inserted into channels of the bottom. There were Cattenar, Cappa or Celonatio working this way. But this tradition was finished in 1770, leaving room for JB Guadagnini introducing the Cremonese method, but also a bit later for some genuine french makers like Lete using the new developed outside mould construction, which later was continued by Lete's pupil Pressenda, too.

According to this informations we had to assume that the OP was made before 1770 (very unlikely IMO) or it can't have any relation to Turin as long as it's constructed as described. This would answer the OP question.

 

Very good information - thanks. Could you link to the Kass article?

Pacherele is a bit of a mystery to me too - he seems to have started out in Mirecourt, then worked for Pressenda, spent a bit of time in Genoa, then ended his career in Nice. A later Nice violin of his I had seemed to be inside mold construction, complete with pins half-set under the purfling like Stradivari.

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6 hours ago, martin swan said:

As everyone has said, difficult to assess a fiddle in this kind of reworked condition ... if you asked me if it was French I would say "why not" but without much conviction ...

The edges, corners and button seem to be so smoothed over it's hard to know what they were like originally, and the varnish can't tell us much. A dendro might give some regional clues.

With regard to the connection between France and Turin, that's a nice and interesting question! It certainly pre-dates Pressenda, who was after all an apprentice in the Lété & Denis workshop. Joseph Calot, an apprentice of Lupot, was a close collaborator of Pressenda's ... but I don't know if the Turin construction style derived from early Mirecourt or Lupot (or neither).

 

From my memory, Joseph Calot was a guitar maker trained in Mirecourt and later joined  the workshop of I think it was Clement in Paris in rue croix petite champs. where his main occupation was presumably to make guitars. At the same time he must have acquired basic skills in violin making. 

When M. Lete died unexpectedly the widow needed urgently help and called in workers from Paris and Calot came in. I suspect he was chosen because he was able to work on guitars and violins. 

In any case I can't remember that he had a connection with the famous Lupot. 

The working methods in the Lete workshop were French the reason for which Presssendss instruments are not really Italian in their style. 

 

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1 hour ago, martin swan said:

Very good information - thanks. Could you link to the Kass article?

Pacherele is a bit of a mystery to me too - he seems to have started out in Mirecourt, then worked for Pressenda, spent a bit of time in Genoa, then ended his career in Nice. A later Nice violin of his I had seemed to be inside mold construction, complete with pins half-set under the purfling like Stradivari.

Pacherel, to be correct Pierre pacherel and not his brother Michel, was certainly mirecourt trained. Years ago there was an interesting debate in the Strad magazine between Philip Kass and Christophe Landon about who made the pressenda instruments. Kass supported the idea that they were.mostly made by Pressenda while Landon argued that someone like pressenda who started to learn violin making at an advanced age for only 4 years or so couldn't have acquired the skills to work at the level a Pressenda violin is made. 

IMO, with all respect to Kass' vast knowledge on Turin instruments, I think Landon is right about this. Therefore pacherel must be considered one of the main forces behind Pressendas production. His obscurity comes mostly from the fact that he made violins for Pressenda in the white which were mailed (?) or hand carried to Turin. 

 

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1 hour ago, martin swan said:

Very good information - thanks. Could you link to the Kass article?

Pacherele is a bit of a mystery to me too - he seems to have started out in Mirecourt, then worked for Pressenda, spent a bit of time in Genoa, then ended his career in Nice. A later Nice violin of his I had seemed to be inside mold construction, complete with pins half-set under the purfling like Stradivari.

Pacherel, to be correct Pierre pacherel and not his brother Michel, was certainly mirecourt trained. Years ago there was an interesting debate in the Strad magazine between Philip Kass and Christophe Landon about who made the pressenda instruments. Kass supported the idea that they were.mostly made by Pressenda while Landon argued that someone like pressenda who started to learn violin making at an advanced age for only 4 years or so couldn't have acquired the skills to work at the level a Pressenda violin is made. 

IMO, with all respect to Kass' vast knowledge on Turin instruments, I think Landon is right about this. Therefore pacherel must be considered one of the main forces behind Pressendas production. His obscurity comes mostly from the fact that he made violins for Pressenda in the white which were mailed (?) or hand carried to Turin. 

The fact that he used different construction methods was probably due to the fact that he worked on demand on one side and on the other side, for his few own instruments, just the way he liked to do it.

Edited by Andreas Preuss
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Concerning the size of the corner blocks I don't sees reason why  Mirecourt type corner blocks should be in the work of a Guadagnini family member in the 19th century. 

However, the Guadagnini shop was big business dealing mostly with guitars. I wonder what they made when occasionally a demand for a violin came in? Send the customer away or rather get a fiddle somewhere and label with their label? (not a seldom practice in the19th century) There I would ask Philip Kass for a better and more educated answer. 

Looking at the photos, nothing comes to my mind, and I assume the German 'expert'was not doing homework properly. If the head is replaced it could be a vague indication to mid 18thcentury French work because scrolls of that period have a typical elongated shape with a bump on the pegbox right under the volute.

So as a whole the label and the fiddle simply don't match.

 

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9 hours ago, Andreas Preuss said:

From my memory, Joseph Calot was a guitar maker trained in Mirecourt and later joined  the workshop of I think it was Clement in Paris in rue croix petite champs. where his main occupation was presumably to make guitars. At the same time he must have acquired basic skills in violin making. 

When M. Lete died unexpectedly the widow needed urgently help and called in workers from Paris and Calot came in. I suspect he was chosen because he was able to work on guitars and violins. 

In any case I can't remember that he had a connection with the famous Lupot. 

The working methods in the Lete workshop were French the reason for which Presssendss instruments are not really Italian in their style. 

 

There's a very good article by Christophe Landon tracing the connection between Pressenda, Pacherel(e) and Calot amongst others. Calot is thought by Eric Blot to be the originator of the Pressenda varnish.

http://www.landonviolins.com/Pages/Joint Ventures.pdf

As for the connection between Lupot and Calot, I have a Calot which was made in the Lupot shop. According th the Chi Mei article, Calot went to Lupot in 1809, and our viooin is from 1815. Calot worked for Clément in 1830 after his first sojourn in Turin.

http://cm2.chimeimuseum.org/en/craftsman/france2/jose1793.html

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8 hours ago, Andreas Preuss said:

Pacherel, to be correct Pierre pacherel and not his brother Michel, was certainly mirecourt trained.

Sorry i just assume that people know that I know what I'm talking about! Yes, Pierre Pacherele (or Pacherel, both spellings were used by the man himself and both are accepted widely).

With regard to Pressenda, it's surely also accepted at least within the trade that these are the product of various hands.

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10 hours ago, martin swan said:

Very good information - thanks. Could you link to the Kass article?

 

There are three parts, the access seems to be free (I used a privately made copy:ph34r:)

https://tarisio.com/cozio-archive/cozio-carteggio/violin-making-in-turin-part-1-1650-1770/

https://tarisio.com/cozio-archive/cozio-carteggio/violin-making-in-turin-part-ii-the-guadagnini-family/

https://tarisio.com/cozio-archive/cozio-carteggio/violin-making-in-turin-part-3-the-19th-century/

The informations regarding Pressenda, Pacherele etc. are in the third part, but just telling that Pacherele's hand was always "present" and that he might have sent violins in the white to the Pressenda shop, like suggested above.

 

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Unfortunately this kind of paper with ribbed structure will not be very helpfull to determine the provenance. It was widely used all over the europe from late middle ages to mid 19. centurie. For example, It was used as a line up material in quite a few instruments of different types in the middle of 18. c. in Italy, and it was widely used as a label material all ower the place. I do not see many examples of Guadagnini family labels , that used this kind of material though (judging just by photographs avaliable to me ofcourse). It seems that parchment  or paper made on flat surface mold (instade of the wire one) was used in most cases.

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2 hours ago, martin swan said:

Sorry i just assume that people know that I know what I'm talking about! Yes, Pierre Pacherele (or Pacherel, both spellings were used by the man himself and both are accepted widely).

With regard to Pressenda, it's surely also accepted at least within the trade that these are the product of various hands.

Sorry about that, Martin. Wasn't meant personally. I just know that there are a few people here who don't know violin making history as well as you do.

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