Johan Anton Gedler

A fine and unusual baroque violin, Füssen, circa 1750

The Bavarian town of Füssen was a leading centre of instrument making from the mid-1400s onwards, with a guild of instrument makers formed in 1562. It’s importance declined in the early nineteenth century, but when Johan Anton Gedler made this…

 

Perry & Wilkinson

An Irish violin by Perry & Wilkinson, Dublin 1824.

I have now seen several violins and cellos made for Perry and Wilkinson in Dublin during the 1820s that bear a very strong relationship to Richard Tobin despite the fact that he had left Dublin for London sometime before 1810,…

 

Circle of Wilhelm Azan

A 16-inch viola, circle of Wilhelm Azan, Aix-en-Provence, 1668

A very early and rare French seventeenth-century viola approximating the Haute-Contre size found in orchestras of the seventeenth century. The outline, general form and varnish are strikingly simiar to a bass violin by Wilhelm Azan in the Musee de la Musique, Paris, and the partly illegible label gives a clear date for 1668, supported by dendrochronology.

 

Rüdolf Hös

A 17-inch viola by Rüdolf Hös, Munich circa 1685

Rüdolf Hös was born to an important family of instrument makers in Füssen in 1640, but was sent away to apprentice in Rome sometime around 1663. His application for citizenship of the city of Munich states that he spent 19 years in Italy, working in Bologna and Venice before his return to Germany and his appointment as instrument maker at the Ducal Court in Munich.

 

Jonathan Hill

A fine contemporary viola d'amore by Jonathan Hill

This viola d’amore is copied from a very fine example in the Victoria and Albert Museum, made by Jean Nicolas Lambert (and sold by his widow in 1772), one of the most outstanding Parisian makers of his day. Jonathan’s instrument is typical of the very high standards of workmanship and acute observational skills that I have come to expect in his work. Quite simply, it is the finest viola d’amore by a contemporary maker that I have seen in many years.