Italian Violins

Fine Italian violins, selected for tone.

Andrea Pontedoro Violin, Edinburgh 2007


Andrea Pontedoro ViolinThis is a very attractive modern Italian violin by Andrea Pontedoro, made during his period of residence in Edinburgh. Andrea is a fine maker who draws influence from the De Bonis family of his native Calabria. You can read more about him here. The model is individual, the wood is superb, the varnish rich and subtly shaded. More details

Abele Naldi Violin, Milan 1968


Abele Naldi Violin, Milan 1968This is a lovely violin by 20th century Milanese maker Abele Naldi. It’s unmistakably Italian in conception, just on the artistic side of brash, very individual in model and execution. The spruce used for the front is exceptional – very regular closely spaced grain, probably the same wood that Naldi used for guitars – and the back and ribs are made from wood with a spectacular quilted figure, possibly pearwood. More details

Alessandro Di Matteo Violin, Cremona 2009


Contemporary Italian violinAlessandro Di Matteo started out life as a professional violinist, but soon switched his attention to making. Perhaps that explains the unusual tonal refinement of this violin. I’m no big fan of contemporary making, particularly the New Cremonese school, but this violin really stands apart from that trend. It’s lightly built, individual in model, modest in appearance, and very mature and sophisticated in tone. The materials used are first class and the work is superb. More details

Bisiach Workshop Violin, Milan circa 1930

Recently sold

Bisiach Workshop ViolinThis is a fine Italian violin from the Bisiach workshop. Although it comes with a certificate from Giacomo & Leandro Bisiach as a Giuseppe Ceruti and appears to bear an original Ceruti label, in fact it’s a typical example of the dodgier “back room “ activities of this workshop. We are gradually becoming aware of the extent to which the Bisiachs produced fake “antiques” for their gullible clientele, and it was very common for a new instrument to be made with parts of an earlier violin. More details

Bisiach Workshop Violin, Milan circa 1925

Recently sold

Made in the Bisiach violin workshopThis is an exceptional Italian violin from the early 20th century. The Bisiach shop was a gathering point for some great and talented makers – the Antoniazzi family, Gaetano Sgarobotto and many others. Along with the ‘new build’ instruments which received a Bisaich label (even if no Bisiach had a hand in the making), the shop produced fine antiqued instruments, many of which were sold or passed off as originals. This is a perfect example, broadly an attempt at a Guadagnini, and in some ways very credible. More details

Constantino Celani Violin, Ascoli Piceno 1900

Price on application

Constantino Celani Violin, Ascoli Piceno 1900Constantino and Emidio or Emilio Celani (Il Turco) were brothers making a wide range of musical instruments in the Marche region of West Central Italy. Although their work is not particularly refined, they used excellent and successful models, and the materials are always good. This violin has a beautifully flamed back and scroll made from local maple, and a rich oil varnish over a golden ground. The purfling is hand made, the blacks being dyed hardwood rather than ebony. More details

Giuseppe Baldantoni Violin, Ancona circa 1840

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Giuseppe Baldantoni Violin, Ancona  circa 1840This is an outstanding example of Baldantoni’s work in near perfect condition. It also has a powerful and sophisticated sound suitable for a demanding soloist. A leading maker of the Central Italian school, Baldantoni followed a broadly Stradivari model with slightly flattened arches. His instruments tend to be very successful tonally with great projection. More details

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