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GeorgeH

What Features Distinguish a Bergonzi Model?

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15 minutes ago, sospiri said:

1) No I haven't seen any. Does that mean that the ugly ones, (take a look for yourself and answer my question) are not something I can comment on?

2) Were they carved by a different hand?

3) Am I not allowed to say this because I'm not part of your world? But you are allowed to say that an ugly scroll on a cheap fiddle is what it is, an ugly scroll?

 

3) Comment is one thing.  Judging the veracity of other individuals observations (especially those who actually have  experience with these instruments) is another.  Dare I say it's disruptive?  :)

1&2) No one can really comment on what you're seeing without knowledge of the specific instrument (Original head?  Excess of wear? Head by Michelengelo?). 

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10 minutes ago, Jeffrey Holmes said:

3) Comment is one thing.  Judging the veracity of other individuals observations (especially those who actually have  experience with these instruments) is another. Dare I say it's disruptive?  :) 

1&2) No one can really comment on what you're seeing without knowledge of the specific instrument (original head?  Excess of wear? Head by Michelengelo?). 

https://tarisio.com/cozio-archive/browse-the-archive/makers/maker/?Maker_ID=59

Do you see some of those made in the 1730s were either carved by a different hand or something was wrong.

 

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4 minutes ago, sospiri said:

https://tarisio.com/cozio-archive/browse-the-archive/makers/maker/?Maker_ID=59

Do you see some of those made in the 1730s were either carved by a different hand or something was wrong.

 

I think you need to point to specific examples - for all we know you may be looking at an example with a replacement head.

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18 minutes ago, sospiri said:

It's something I've been wanting to say for a long time. Why censor me for being honest?

I am not censoring you at all, I am encouraging you to start a new thread. You are hijacking this one.

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Just now, martin swan said:

I think you need to point to specific examples - for all we know you may be looking at an example with a replacement head.

I thought of that, but there are several of them from the 1730s.

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The scroll on the Bergonzi "Spanish" cello is a masterpiece of beautiful and bold carving.  Many of us have stared at the photos for hours.  

on we go,

Joe

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53 minutes ago, martin swan said:

I think you need to point to specific examples - for all we know you may be looking at an example with a replacement head.

Replacement parts are what I was also suggesting, prior to the time of restorers being able to fix almost anything, or at at least fix it for little while.

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1 hour ago, martin swan said:

I suppose sospiri is one of these new age distrupters who has yet to descend into the valley of despair ....

image.png.3d46c708447c82e1195f619390bcda29.png

  

Classic and appropriate 

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1 hour ago, Jeffrey Holmes said:

  Dare I say it's disruptive?  :)

I found it rather entertaining while having breakfast. 

I wonder if he's figured out that it is Del Gesu he is thinking about rather than Bergonzi.  

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20 hours ago, uncle duke said:

I found it rather entertaining while having breakfast. 

I wonder if he's figured out that it is Del Gesu he is thinking about rather than Bergonzi.  

Both. Look at the scroll on the Leduc and compared it to some of the Bergonzi attributed violins of the 1730s

https://www.roger-hargrave.de/PDF/Artikel/Strad/Artikel_2000_09_Seeking_MRS_Guarneri_PDF.pdf

 

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23 hours ago, Jeffrey Holmes said:

No one can really comment on what you're seeing without knowledge of the specific instrument (Original head?  Excess of wear? Head by Michelengelo?). 

This brings up some interesting questions ?

If a violin by someone special has a scroll made by a different hand does the body of itself still qualify the violin to be described as by that maker ?

Its not unusual for a vioin to lose its original scroll at some point so how does this affect a valuation ?

What proportion of the value does a body have to a scroll ?

50% / 50%  ? , or maybe - 75% / 25%  etc ?

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4 hours ago, sospiri said:

Both. Look at the scroll on the Leduc and compared it to some of the Bergonzi attributed violins of the 1730s

https://www.roger-hargrave.de/PDF/Artikel/Strad/Artikel_2000_09_Seeking_MRS_Guarneri_PDF.pdf

 

Leduc looks like an earlier Mariani of Pesaro to me - not convinced 100%  he made that one but that's just me and my opinion.

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Another dumb question...because I think it's been asked and answered before, but I can't quite remember.

So, let's say it's a small workshop...like Strad's.  But everyone happens to have input making a particular violin, and Strad is 'just' overseeing the process.  He might tweak it a little, but really didn't make any of it.  It it still considered his work?

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26 minutes ago, violinnewb said:

I've never heard the phrase "rose colored glasses."  What does it mean?  Is it an insult?  My glasses are a bit old and are piss colored.  Getting a new pair today though.

Congrats on getting new glasses.  It's something I always look forward to. :)

Rose-coloured glasses isn't necessarily an insult, but it can be, depending on context.  ^_^

It just means that someone has a brighter, cheerier or more naive take on something than what it really is.  They look at the world (or the issue or the object) through 'rose-coloured glasses'.

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OK, I'll take Sospiri's question seriously.

First, Robert Bein observed that violinists see violins as though through welding glasses (with a vague and unrefined impression of shape and color). Violin makers who aren't exposed to a lot of violins, and armchair experts have the same problem. In this case, I'd say that the things you are seeing are there in a small way, but not of sufficient density to overpower the actual points of identifying Bergonzi. This is an easy mistake to make if you aren't sufficiently skilled to tell different makers apart accurately, and in this regard heads are the hardest test of all and the last thing most people figure out. There is also the additional problem that it's rare that makers don't ever change how they do some things through time, and the opposing need to consider that there are some things they keep constant through time. So it's never just a matter of looking at two objects and seeing how they are the same or different in small details in isolation.

So, yes, I see some commonalities with Guarneri heads, as well as Rugeri, Stradivarl, and the entire Cremonese school, but that's not enough to say that any of those makers, all working in a similar tradition with a variety of commonalities, made those Bergonzi heads.

Second, I think you have your Guarneri family makers mixed up, but that's because you are following Roger H, who has his end-period Guarneri family makers and violins mixed up, in my opinion. 

Also, If you could see the real violins, you should immediately understand that the Guarneri heads you are comparing to Bergonzi don't bear nearly as much resemblance in 3D--for instance, that it's possible to look at two violins from the side and get an impression that can't survive at all when looking at them from the front or back.

If I may comment on something else, the reason you have such a lack of credibility around here is because your comments are often poisoned with aggressive contrarianism, in that you seem to feel the need to make your mark as being the only one who sees the obvious thing that only you see. That is not because you are smarter; it is because you are way short of knowing what you are talking about to the necessary depth to see your own errors (thus the reference earlier to Dunning/Kruger.)

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2 minutes ago, Rue said:

Congrats on getting new glasses.  It's something I always look forward to. :)

Rose-coloured glasses isn't necessarily an insult, but it can be, depending on context.  ^_^

It just means that someone has a brighter, cheerier or more naive take on something than what it really is.  They look at the world (or the issue or the object) through 'rose-coloured glasses'.

Good old Nick Lucas. They don't make "em like that anymore.

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4 minutes ago, Rue said:

Congrats on getting new glasses.  It's something I always look forward to. :)

Rose-coloured glasses isn't necessarily an insult, but it can be, depending on context.  ^_^

It just means that someone has a brighter, cheerier or more naive take on something than what it really is.  They look at the world (or the issue or the object) through 'rose-coloured glasses'.

Ok.  It seems as though the comment was unwarranted and unnecessary then.  Thank you for the clarification!

 

Wait.  I should have replied: "I see!"

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On 12/19/2019 at 7:07 AM, Michael Appleman said:

Some of the distinguishing features of Carlo Bergonzi's violins as I've learned them are: 

Body length generally shorter than Strad, often 352mm, but a long-ish stop often 195mm+

Low-set, widely spaces f-holes

Square-ish center bouts, the purfling line often doesn't pick-up smoothly across the corners, but zigs inwards at the center bouts.

Higher ribs without a taper above the top corners

Center bout rib linings let-in with a point (Mittenwald style!) instead of square

There's I believe only one Bergonzi violin that has its original neck, the Kreisler (see above) and what's left of it shows the neck was quite a bit longer than Strad's surviving original necks. About the same length as a "modern" neck!

Original Bergonzi corners are long and tapered, neither trumpetting nor hooked à la Del Gesu, but many (like the Kreisler) have had their corners "reduced."

Otherwise, the nicest ones do look alot like Strads, may have been sold through the Strad family (Paolo) and many, like the Kreisler above, picked up Strad labels very early on (the Kreisler seems to have been bought by Cozio from Paolo Stradivari and the date on the Strad label inside it looks like Cozio's handwriting) 

Once one starts looking at Michelangelo Bergonzis, the workmanship falls off quite a bit, but the outlines and general design are still close to his father. With the grandsons, Nicolo and Carlo II, things get very different!

This covers most of what I know about Bergonzi's models. It seems like he adopted Strad's 353ish mm body length, but used a longer neck so as to keep the Strad long form stop length? 

The turns drop down dramatically causing the scroll eyes to seemingly extend further out. Viewed from the back the 2nd turn off the scroll should be only slightly visible / peeking out just beyond the width of the back of the pegbox. His pegbox outlines very between being a bit bulkier below the A peg, or at other time slimmer / sleeker.

His upper and bottom block pins don't get bisected by the purfling like Strad's - they are further inside and off the center line.

I highly recommend adding this book to your library - it's an excellent resource and well worth the extremely reasonable price: https://tarisio.com/bookshop/cremona-1730-1750-nellolimpo-della-liuteria/

If I was single out unrefined aspects of Carlo Bergonzi's work, I'd go with his purfling, not his scrolls.

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I'm curious -- are there any excellent contemporary makers that are regularly producing Bergonzi copies, especially of the smaller, 352mm-or-less models?

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12 minutes ago, lwl said:

I'm curious -- are there any excellent contemporary makers that are regularly producing Bergonzi copies, especially of the smaller, 352mm-or-less models?

Christian Bayon, based in Lisbon, has posted about making a Bergonzi model and started a thread about it. Several makers chimed in about their concerns with how the slightly narrower center bouts could impact tone, but Christian seems to have had good success. I think it's not the sort of thing that many players would notice or appreciate, since the differences with a Strad model are somewhat subtle. 

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