Sign in to follow this  
Deconetti

Italian violin... but genuine?

Recommended Posts

Hi all,

First time post, but an avid reader for some time... thanks to all those who contribute.

Following a house clearance, I've recently come across a violin that, per its label, is by Pedrazzini, made in Milan in 1922.  The inside of the instrument is branded "G. PEDRAZZINI", and the label is signed (by someone, possibly Pedrazzini?...).

Anyway, I'm no expert on Italian violins from the early twentieth century - but I suspect that someone here might be... so...

Does this look like an authentic Pedrazzini, or something much less interesting?

Any insight very gratefully received, with thanks.

 

Violin 3.jpg

Violin 4.jpg

Violin 5.jpg

Violin 6.jpg

Violin 7.jpg

Violin 8.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Deconetti said:

.. and a few more.

No chance as an authentic Pedrazzini and serious doubts as to it being of Italian origin.

Unfortunately there are a lot of copies and fakes out there and it appears that you own one of them.

Bruce

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But plenty to be happy about. Looks like decent quality, good condition, good model. Should make a nice servicible instrument. Estate sale fiddles are often money pits.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bruce Carlson/henrypeacham/deans: thank you all for taking a moment to respond.  I wonder if anyone out there has any thoughts as to where the violin might have been made (if, as seems likely, it’s not Italian...)?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IMHO, nicely made mid-20th. C. trade/student  fiddle, probably German, but of uncertain parentage.  How does it sound?  :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
44 minutes ago, Violadamore said:

IMHO, nicely made mid-20th. C. trade/student  fiddle, probably German, but of uncertain parentage.  How does it sound?  :)

Thanks for your thoughts Violadamore.  The violin sounds very good: quite bright at the top, well focused through the middle and bottom.  Overall, it’s a very well balanced instrument. It needs setting up properly: the bridge isn’t great for starters, and the strings are cheap, so I havent yet seen/heard it at its best.  Even so, it projects well.  Nothing obviously structurally awry (although I realise that, as a player and not a maker/restorer, making such a comment amongst the exalted herepresent on Maestronet is asking for trouble... ... ... happy to be shot down in flames). 

And, as deans and Rue have observed, it’s a pretty fiddle.  Overall, much better than one would expect to come across. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, scribe said:

That's the same one.

He did well to pick that up at a house clearance, its already over estimate and is bound to do good money as the auction is not for a week yet. Looks like it has two decent bows and a nice case. In recent times  in the UK, if a violin is half decent and has a label they do very well. A few years back  before the internet, you could pick violins up like this for cheap. Not any more based on recent results.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Delabo said:

That's the same one.

He did well to pick that up at a house clearance, its already over estimate and is bound to do good money as the auction is not for a week yet. Looks like it has two decent bows and a nice case. In recent times  in the UK, if a violin is half decent and has a label they do very well. A few years back  before the internet, you could pick violins up like this for cheap. Not any more based on recent results.

So I gather that nobody is really concerned at all as to whether or not the violin is authentic. Shouldn't this be on the auction scroll???

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, Bruce Carlson said:

So I gather that nobody is really concerned at all as to whether or not the violin is authentic. Shouldn't this be on the auction scroll???

Well, of course you are right, but in the UK  general auction sales start with the warning of "caveat emptor" (buyer beware). They have merely said that it bears the label that says such and such.

I very much doubt that it will end up at anything more than a thousand pounds.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Bruce Carlson said:

So I gather that nobody is really concerned at all as to whether or not the violin is authentic. Shouldn't this be on the auction scroll???

IMHO, yup, this should be in The Auction Scroll, locked tight, and Jeffrey should express himself freely to the OP, with a "strong letter to follow".  :ph34r::lol: 

I've said elsewhere that this sort of topic post, at least after something is already being offered for sale, is tiresome, dishonest, and annoying.  :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To be clear, I am not the owner of this violin, nor the offering party.  And I don’t work for the auction house involved.  If I had been fortunate enough to pick it up myself, I wouldn’t be selling it.  I’ve no interest in the sale,but was told a litttle of the violin’s background when I visited the auction house.  I’m only interested in the instrument, as it’s pretty, sounds nice, and is rather better than the rubbish that normally turns up at the local auction house.   If I’ve offended anyone, I apologise - not my intention.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Violadamore said:

IMHO, yup, this should be in The Auction Scroll, locked tight, and Jeffrey should express himself freely to the OP, with a "strong letter to follow".  :ph34r::lol: 

I've said elsewhere that this sort of topic post, at least after something is already being offered for sale, is tiresome, dishonest, and annoying.  :P

Ah, in the auction scroll, I wondered what Bruce meant by that !

As far as I can see, the op found the violin while clearing a house, and he has entered it in a local auction in London  that sells furniture bric-a-brac etc. He should have said that he had already entered it, but it does appear that it is his own violin, as the pictures he posted are not the same as the ones in the Saleroom catalogue. Its not quite the same as recent ones posted  in the Auction Scroll forum  where people have dishonestly said that they own the violin when in fact it is currently on Ebay.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/29/2018 at 2:24 PM, Bruce Carlson said:

No chance as an authentic Pedrazzini and serious doubts as to it being of Italian origin.

Unfortunately there are a lot of copies and fakes out there and it appears that you own one of them.

I am shocked. I know there are oodles of violins that Stradivari never saw or touched that have labels in them saying he made them, but that this practice has spread to modern makers of lesser renown (of course, making the fake more believable) is regrettable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, Quadibloc said:

I am shocked. I know there are oodles of violins that Stradivari never saw or touched that have labels in them saying he made them, but that this practice has spread to modern makers of lesser renown (of course, making the fake more believable) is regrettable.

When you've gotten more familiar with what's already posted on MN, you'll realize that not only is anyone who's ever made and sold a fiddle considered fodder for fakers, but that some fakers just make up names as they go along.  :lol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Bruce Carlson said:

So I gather that nobody is really concerned at all as to whether or not the violin is authentic. Shouldn't this be on the auction scroll???

With all due respect, I realize that you are an expert on Italian violins, but newbies such as myself have very limited abilities to be even able to identify an Italian violin, let alone to determine if this one is fake. Although this forum is very generous in telling us about German violins, there is a dearth of information about Italian violins. So consequently, my roundabout way of deciding what something might be, is determining what it is not.

Therefore, without ever doubting your minimal proclamation that the violin is a fake, it would have been very helpful if you had also pointed out to us what makes it so. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Quadibloc said:

I am shocked. I know there are oodles of violins that Stradivari never saw or touched that have labels in them saying he made them, but that this practice has spread to modern makers of lesser renown (of course, making the fake more believable) is regrettable.

It applies to some living makers with prices < $5000. Maestronet is an excellent source for those outside the trade, as you and I are, on some grey areas. As you browse old threads you will see what a great public service the site provides in that respect. For example, the recent thread suggesting that the 'tradition' of regraduating Strads to improve the sound, so they could be sold for a higher price, is still going on. Whether a delicate violin continues to get better, the more wood you remove, is a delicate question! MN is a treasure trove of such stories and information, though except where the expert is now in prison, names are rarely shared with outsiders like us :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Delabo said:

Ah, in the auction scroll, I wondered what Bruce meant by that !

As far as I can see, the op found the violin while clearing a house, and he has entered it in a local auction in London  that sells furniture bric-a-brac etc. He should have said that he had already entered it, but it does appear that it is his own violin, as the pictures he posted are not the same as the ones in the Saleroom catalogue. Its not quite the same as recent ones posted  in the Auction Scroll forum  where people have dishonestly said that they own the violin when in fact it is currently on Ebay.

 

Well as far as I can see, he's standing in the auction room photographing the violin to get opinions on whether or not it's a genuine Pedrazzini? And what you see in the background is not the OPs furniture, but another lot in the auction.

Anyway, he's got the answers he was looking for.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Violadamore said:

not only is anyone who's ever made and sold a fiddle considered fodder for fakers,

Which I suppose means that it would even be possible to find a fake Walter H. Mayson...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Delabo said:

Therefore, without ever doubting your minimal proclamation that the violin is a fake, it would have been very helpful if you had also pointed out to us what makes it so.

Certainly true; of course, one could always Google up some images of a few real Pedrazzinis and look at them; possibly there will be differences obvious to even the untrained eye.

I admit that the alleged fake looked like a well-made violin, not, say, something obvious like an inferior Markneukirchen product.

What I found when I Googled some Pedrazzini images is that authentic Pedrazzinis, like the violin shown here, seem to be made according to a Guarnerius pattern.

They seemed to have nice, bright, shiny varnish, golden in color, rather than the dull brownish varnish of this one, though, but for all I know, that could be an artifact of maintenance. Also, the violin pictured here has plates that extend only very slightly beyond the ribs, which may be significant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 hours ago, Delabo said:

With all due respect, I realize that you are an expert on Italian violins, but newbies such as myself have very limited abilities to be even able to identify an Italian violin, let alone to determine if this one is fake. Although this forum is very generous in telling us about German violins, there is a dearth of information about Italian violins. So consequently, my roundabout way of deciding what something might be, is determining what it is not.

Therefore, without ever doubting your minimal proclamation that the violin is a fake, it would have been very helpful if you had also pointed out to us what makes it so. :)

Italian violins. First off, there is no such thing as Italy as regards violinmaking. There is no special feature or trait that we could tag as a common Italian characteristic. If your common trait is sound or acoustic performance then you're barking up the wrong tree because it's not always there and can't be used to positively identify a maker. It's like saying "German" violin or "French" violin which really means nothing at all unless you can narrow it down to a school of making, in a certain time period or of a certain influence. Not all violins made in Milan even look necessarily "Milanese". Some makers were deeply inspired by the old Milanese makers and more or less continued a style or tradition whereas other makers just flat ignored the past, the only common point being that we know they all worked in Milan. Others bear some common traits, traits that vary from maker to maker but at least reflect the influence of one maker on another confined to a certain area so that we can form a rough and ready idea of a "Milanese style".

In order to say no to the so-called Pedrazzini, just for the label, I have to know very well, the print styles used by Pedrazzini in different periods of his activity, his signature, how he penned his numbers all of which are very different on this violin in reference to what you can see on a "good" label. For the body there is the model, how he treated his corners, the purfling, types of varnishing used, styles of soundholes, carving of the scroll, tool marks etc. etc. In addition, a lot more would be observable if I had the instrument in the workshop to examine. Internal construction, materials used, choice of woods, little quirks and features in his workmanship. The more instruments you see enable you to form a clearer a picture of a maker's style and characteristics which can and do change during the span of his working life. All this for only one maker. What about all the other Milanese makers? This is only ONE of many Milanese makers.

I don't really understand why you are frustrated about not being able to determine the authenticity of a given instrument when there are others, like Jacob Saunders, who have spent a lifetime of study and can still have doubts about instruments he examines. It would be great if it were just a question of ticking boxes. In many instruments one can only say what it is not, but it's a start.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.