Giovanni Battista Guadagnini
|Giovanni Battista Guadagnini|
|Also known as||G. B. Guadagnini
23 June 1711|
Bilegno in Val Tidone, Italy
|Died||18 September 1786
Giovanni Battista Guadagnini (or "G. B. Guadagnini"); (23 June 1711 – 18 September 1786) was an Italian luthier, regarded as one of the finest craftsmen of string instruments in history. He is widely considered the third greatest maker after Antonio Stradivari and Giuseppe Guarneri "del Gesù".
Giovanni Battista Guadagnini, aka Johannes Baptista Guadagnini, was born while both Stradivari and Guarneri were at the zenith of their production years, roughly 40 minutes away from the City of Cremona on June 23, 1711 at Borgonovo Val Tidone of Piacenza.
Recent research has shed light as to the influence of both Casa Stradivari and Casa Guarneri of Cremona on the lines of symmetry of instruments by Guadagnini, hence J.B. Guadagnini was still a youth while his father Lorenzo, both in Bilegno and Piacenza, was a contributing maker of instruments for Stradivari's workshop, the leading violin shop in the first half of the 18th century.
Antonio Stradivari died at age 92 in 1737 while J.B. Guadagnini was 26 years old, and Bartolomeo Guarneri del Gesu at 46 in 1744 while Guadagnini was 33. Hence, a logical nexus could be made whereby the young J.B. Guadagnini may have learned the rudiments of the trade in Cremona as he used the internal form with linings and blocks set in the Cremonese style, a method of construction he would use for the rest of his life.
It was the normative use of trade in 18th-century Italy for a young person to start as an apprentice in a master's workshop around age m12, to be allowed to practice a given trade afterward. Guild shops, either in consortium or under one roof, were headed by a master who provided journeymen papers for successful apprentices. Trade guilds, providing career opportunities for skilled tradesmen including musical instrument makers, were a mercantile arrangement in Europe since medieval times, including in Italy. Guilds were a pre-capitalist industrial organization under ducal oversight which regulated trade practice, quality of articles produced, and pricing policies.
The fact that J.B. Guadagnini was a skilled luthier as well as violin maker possibly before his Piacenza period attests to thorough guild training and graduation from journeyman status. Likewise, the fact that violin makers in Piacenza and surrounding cities, including Gasparo Lorenzini, Joseph Nadotti and Felice Berreta, already called themselves “alumni” of the Guadagninis attests to formal guild status attained by Guadagnini's workshop. His work is divided into four main periods corresponding to, and named after, Piacenza, Milan, Parma and Turin, the four cities in Italy where he lived and worked. Appreciation by both connoisseurs and musicians alike attest to the fact that J.B. Guadagnini may possibly be considered the last of the great master violin makers in the second half of the so-called "golden age," while Italy was under Bourbon rule.
J.B. Guadagnini died in Turin in 1786.
Performers with Guadagnini instruments
|Violinist||Date & place of manufacture||Instrument name||Comments||Reference|
|Mayumi Seiler||c. 1740, Piacenza|
|Jascha Heifetz||1741, Piacenza||ex-Heifetz||Provenance - by Rembert Wurlitzer in 1946 and Dario D'Attili in 1991|||
|Riccardo Brengola||1747, Piacenza||"Contessa Crespi"|||
|Goran Končar||1753, Milan|||
|Adolf Brodsky||1751, Milan||ex-Brodsky|||
|Roman Simovic||1752||on loan from Jonathan Moulds|||
|Zakhar Bron||1757, Milan|||
|Andrew Dawes||1770, Parma|||
|Carl Flesch||ex-Henri Vieuxtemps|||
|Min-Jeong Koh||c. 1767|||
|David Garrett||1772||In December 2007, Garrett fell after a performance and smashed his Guadagnini, which he had purchased four years earlier for US$1 million. He now uses it for mainly his outdoor crossover performances.|
|David Greed||1757||Owned by the Yorkshire Guadagini 1757 Syndicate.|||
|Joseph Joachim||1767, Parma||ex-Joachim|||
|David Kim||1757||on loan from The Philadelphia Orchestra|||
|Manfred Leverkus||1752||ex-Kneisel||stolen in 2006|
|Pekka Kuusisto||1752||on loan from the Finnish Cultural Foundation|||
|Wayne Lin||1779, Turin|||
|Haldon Martinson||1750||Being used in the Boston Symphony Orchestra|||
|Ginette Neveu||Purchased early spring, 1949. Involved in a plane crash later that year, in which Neveu died. Scroll later apparently appeared in Paris, having changed hands several times.|||
|Linda Rosenthal||1772, Turin|||
|Mari Silje Samuelsen||1773, Turin||On loan from ASAF (Anders Sveeas Charitable Foundation, Oslo).|||
|Lara St. John||1779||Salabue||called "the Resurrection" by St. John|||
|Henri Temianka||1752||Built on the Petro Guarnerius model.||[Certificate of Joseph Vedral, violinmaker, Holland, 28 September 1929]|
|Lyndon Johnston Taylor||1777|||
|Henri Vieuxtemps||ex-Henri Vieuxtemps|||
|Eugène Ysaÿe||1774||ex-Eugène Ysaÿe|||
|Sini-Maaria Simonen||1760||on loan from the Finnish Cultural Foundation|||
|Bob Wills||1784||Described as 157 years old when bought in 1941 for $3,000.00, Wills later claimed in an interview that he gave it away "to a friend of mine in Tayxas" and bought another for $5,000.00.|||
|Li Chuan Yun||1784||on loan from the Stradivari Society|||
|Simone Porter||1745||on loan from The Mandell Collection of Southern California|||
|Richard Deakin||NK||English chamber musician and soloist, currently teaching at RAM in London, was using one in 1980s and likely still is |
- Li-Kuo Chang plays the 'ex-Vieuxtemps' G.B. Guadagnini viola, Parma c.1768
- Geraldine Walther plays a G.B. Guadagnini viola, Turin 1774
- Natalie Clein plays the "Simpson" Guadagnini cello (1777)
- David Geringas plays a G.B. Guadagnini cello made in 1761
- Maxine Neuman plays a 1772 Guadagnini
- Han-na Chang plays the G.B. Guadagnini cello made in Milan in 1757
- Gilberto Munguia plays a G.B. Guadagnini cello (1748)
- Saša Večtomov played a G.B. Guadagnini cello made in Milan in 1754
- Sol Gabetta plays a G.B. Guadagnini cello (1759)
- Carter Brey, principal cellist of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, plays a Guadagnini made in Milan in 1745
- Australian String Quartet (ASQ) plays four matched instruments: a violoncello (c.1743), and a violin (1748-49), both made in Piacenza, and a viola (1783) and another violin (1784) made in Turin
|Part of a series on|
|Fiddle and Violin|
|History of the violin|
- G B Guadagnini
- E.N. Doring: The Guadagnini Family of Violin Makers (Chicago,1949)
- A.H. König, ed.: Die Geigenbauer der Guadagnini-Familie. Die Turiner Schule (Frankfurt, 1981)
- G. Fiori: ‘Documenti biografici di artisti e personaggi piacentini dal ’600 all’ ’800 nell’Archivo Vescovile di Piacenza’, Strenna piacentina (1994), 67–111
- P.J. Kass: Violin Makers of the Piedmontese School
- Vannes, Rene (1985) . Dictionnaire Universel del Luthiers (vol.3). Bruxelles: Les Amis de la musique. OCLC 53749830.
- William, Henley (1969). Universal Dictionary of Violin & Bow Makers. Brighton; England: Amati. ISBN 0-901424-00-5.
- Walter Hamma, Meister Italienischer Geigenbaukunst, Wilhelmshaven 1993, ISBN 3-7959-0537-0
- Duane Rosengard: G.B. Guadagnini - The life and achievement of a master maker, Carteggio Media, 2000
- Ernest N. Doring. The Guadagnini Family of Violin Makers Lewis and Sons, Chicago, 1949. Reprint with new introduction by Stewart Pollins, Dover, 2012. ISBN 978048649796-9
- Wagner, Thomas (2008-02-14). "Violinist: Fall Fractures $1M Fiddle". The Associated Press. Associated Press. Retrieved 2008-02-15.
- David Garrett - livestream in NY, 8 June 2012. By David Garrett. YouTube. YouTube, 7 Apr. 2013. Web. 24 July 2013. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Htp6OPCLrXc>.
- San Antonio Rose: The Life And Music Of Bob Wills. Charles R. Townsend. 1976. University of Illinois. p. 230. ISBN 0-252-00470-1
- Natalie Clein
- Aitchison Mnatzaganian cello makers, restorers and dealers
- Maxine Neuman's biography
- ASQ Instruments, Australian String Quartet, accessed 2017-02-12