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pId1
Italian violin - front view
Italian violin - front view
Italienische Geige
Italienische Geige
side view
side view
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Provenance: Cremona
Maker: Romeo Franchi workshop
Length of back: 35.7 cm
Year: 20th century
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Modern Italian violin, Cremona 20th century

Italian violins have been popular around the globe for centuries, and rightly so, given the unmistakable excellent of their acoustic properties. However, as can be observed in other fields as well, this kind of long-term demand leads to faster and more streamlined forms of production and triggers efforts to focus only on the most essential features of the item in demand. And in the case of musical instruments, the most critical aspect is obviously the sound. Romeo Franchi's workshop in Cremona created this violin in the wake of this idea. This 20th century work here is a thoroughbred example of the Italian violin making tradition – yet at the same time it shows that the Franchi workshop drew their own conclusions about what was truly mattered in an instrument. The aesthetic of the violin is typically Italian. The dark-red colored oil varnish is rich and beautiful in its transparency and depth of its colour, covering interestingly chosen tone woods such as the beautifully flamed sycamore maple of the two-piece back and the medium grained top that shows some irregularities. The workshop was willing to accept that such haphazardness can be at odds with the uniquely individual personality of a handmade violin, but ultimately his approach is borne out by the instrument's outstanding, voluminous sound which captures the gentle undertone of perfectly rendered Italian master violins. All of these issues aside, this violin from Italy will win you over because of its most important character trait: its voice.

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