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B625 Jean Francois Aldric, Paris 1831
S236, 4/4 Violin, “Huai Li Ming”, Auckland, NZ, 1996$ 10,000.00
Huai Li Ming came to New Zealand in the early 1990’s, working first for Noel Sweetman before joining the Stringed Instrument Company workshop for two years. This violin was made not long after he established his own workshop, and is typical of his instruments from this period. The violin has an immediate, almost explosive response – playing it is rather like riding a pedigree race horse and can promise an exhilarating experience for those wanting a dynamic, exciting sound. Not for the faint-hearted.
S223 violin, Zhu Hua Jie, Shanghai, China, 1994$ 10,000.00
Zhu Hua Jie made this strongly-modelled violn, with its bold edges and beautifully flamed maple back, in 1994, two years after winning a silver medal for tone at the 1992 Violin Society of America International Competition in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. The tone of this instrument is strong, brilliant, and would suit an experienced player. The pegs, tailpiece, and endpin are elaborately carved from genuine boxwood.
B955 “Officina Claudio Monteverde” oversigned “Gio Maria Ceruti”, Cremona 1923$ 12,000.00
The Cremona workshop “Officina Claudio Monteverde” was established by Aristide Cavalli in 1880. “Gio Maria Ceruti” denoted one of their models rather than having any attachment to the famous family of violin makers by that name. The instrument is handmade however, with some attention to detail, though lacking the rather exaggerated delicacy of the “Aristide Cavalli” model. The tone is rich and warm in the lower strings, with a clear, open E string.
Unlabelled, handmade European, possibly the work of Fritz Elas, Switzerland, mid-late twentieth century$ 12,000.00
Like other well-made copies of Guarneri del Gesu’s Il Cannone violin of 1742, the tone of this striking violin has a slightly explosive quality, as though each note were a thoroughbred racing horse eager to burst out of the gates. The oil-based varnish is a rich, golden red-brown, which is naturally developing the typical wear patterns so often imitated in deliberately antiqued instruments. Played for many years by a top professional musician, the violin comes with a personal history that is both intriguing and mystifying.