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Information on Romanian shop or maker of this viola


acorpcop
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If anyone has some knowledge of, or information about, this workshop/maker I'd purely be interested.  It was gifted to my by my grandmother who helped me pick it out in Munich.  It was at a shop near the Marienplatz.  At the time I had a TDY check burning a hole in my pocket from a year of peacekeeping in the former Republic of Yugoslavia while in the Army and the intent to go to college to study music when I got out.  I can't remember the shop's name and doubt they have sale/purchase records from 1996 plus my German hasn't gotten any better in the intervening decades.   

I had it appraised a couple years back for insurance ($2500 replacement value) and the description is included.  Photos attached as best I can do.  Neither the appraiser nor my luthier have any clue who or what Luca Toau/Joau is.  Google has failed me and I don't speak Romanian.  Luthier recommended asking here stating "someone on Maestronet will know."

Any ideas?

Thanks for taking a look.

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I am Romanian. The name of the maker is "Luca Ioan" . That is all I know. I think ( very not sure ) I had a couple of bows made by him.

The label is slightly suspicious for 1989 ( The name of the country was slightly different ) but OK for 1990 an on. The instrument looks Reghin made.

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On 6/4/2020 at 4:25 AM, Eugen Modri said:

I am Romanian. The name of the maker is "Luca Ioan" . That is all I know. I think ( very not sure ) I had a couple of bows made by him.

The label is slightly suspicious for 1989 ( The name of the country was slightly different ) but OK for 1990 an on. The instrument looks Reghin made.

Thank you all for the information (and thanks for the correction on the name).

So there probably IS a Luca Ioan. The lable might be due to being made for German market perhaps? Doubt there would be any reason to fake the name of the country or put an earlier date on it.  I'm pretty sure no one dreamt an American GI would walk into a fiddle shop in Munich and take it home.

 

Edited by acorpcop
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15 hours ago, acorpcop said:

So there probably IS a Luca Ioan. The lable might be due to being made for German market perhaps? Doubt there would be any reason to fake the name of the country or put an earlier date on it.  I'm pretty sure no one dreamt an American GI would walk into a fiddle shop in Munich and take it home.

I could not say. 

In 1989 Romania was officially known as The Socialist Republic of Romania ( RSR ) and as far as I can remember all products were marked "Made in RSR". That was the law. I know ( because I did it as well ) that violins and bows were often smuggled and sold in the West for actual money. It could be one of those and I think the maker did not originally insert a label but one was attached at a later stage.  Another possibility is that the instrument was made in 89 but labeled in say March 1990. Then all would make sense. I suggest you to contact  Carl Stross  on MN as he was working for Munchen PO at the time and I suspect might know what is going on.

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https://www.bromptons.co/reference/results/details/viola-by-ioan-luca-reghin-1980.html

 

Vasile Mare and Claudiu Ciurba, good contemporary romanian makers from Reghin, both seem to have worked under him for a while. His name turns up on websites from other makers from romania. I'm quite sure he existed. You could contact Claudiu Ciurba, who knows english, and ask him if he has any information for you.

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47 minutes ago, MANFIO said:

The document mentions "workshop production", and the viola - and varnish - reflects that very well.

I get that.  Most workshops have someone's name associated and an address.  I'm well aware the fiddle isn't anything rare or extra special outside of my personal attachment to it.  It's a good playing intermediate viola that suits a church accompanist well enough. I just wanted more info because I couldn't find anything on the internet.  Someone somewhere had to have owned one of these at some point is what my luthier said.

 

16 hours ago, cellopera said:

The shop that you visited near Marienplatz is owned by Peter Benedek. He is a well respected luthier in München. https://benedek.de/?lang=en

That sounds right.  Certainly looks like the right man.

 

1 hour ago, baroquecello said:

You could contact Claudiu Ciurba, who knows english, and ask him if he has any information for you.

Wouldn't know how to even begin doing that.

Thank you all for your time and knowlege.

Edited by acorpcop
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On 6/9/2020 at 7:41 AM, Eugen Modri said:

. I know ( because I did it as well ) that violins and bows were often smuggled and sold in the West for actual money.

It would make for an interesting back story, that is for sure.  Thank you for the information.

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  • 1 month later...

Reply from Herr Benedek:

dar Mr. Zbikowski,

about 40 years ago i sold a few instruments from this maker, but I don't know if Joan Luca is still alive. He was a maker of Reghin in Tanssilvania, Rumania. His work was better student instruments. I sold them in the 1980-ies for ca. 2 - 3.000 DM,

In this time ca 600 - 1000 US$.  Today could be about 4 - 5000 US$.

I hope I could help you and best regards,

Peter Benedek

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