In 2003 a group of Tuscan violinmakers founded the ALT - the Associazione Liuteria Toscana (Association of Tuscan Luthiers). The initial goal was to write and publish the book "Liuteria in Toscana – I Liutai del Novecento" (Violinmaking in Tuscany – Violinmakers of the 20th Century), which was officially presented in Cremona at the string instrument fair Mondomusica in October 2003. After that, intensive activity had taken place. We regularly exhibited at the Cremona Mondomusica and the Frankfurt Musikmesse. We were invited to exhibit at various events in Montreal, Paris, New York,Bangkok, Singapore and London. We also exhibited in Italy, mainly Tuscany, at different cultural events to represent Tuscan violinmaking in the region.
I want to cite a few lines of the introduction to our book, written by Paolo Sorgentone, to give an idea about violinmaking in Tuscany:
" The soul of Tuscan violinmaking cannot be traced to a specific style, the lasting impression of a "founder", a certain construction method or the use of particular materials. Right from its origins, Tuscan violinmaking demonstrated an ability to “welcome” the experiences of others, in order to elaborate upon them using the artistic taste and craftsmanship that have always resided in the region. With all the Tuscan craftsmen, the influence of some distant school is clearly visible . . . and yet all of them were able to distinguish themselves, to elaborate the tradition they inherited. Variety, and the mental openness that derives from it, represent the true richness of contemporary violinmaking in Tuscany: here, the only recognizable constraints are good taste and ability."
This is what living in Tuscany meant to me: I have lived and worked in six different countries and have learned about many different “schools” and techniques in the shops where I worked. The intensity of artistic beauties in Tuscany, combined with the pleasant countryside, put me into a special condition. It was an enormous pleasure to reflect upon the experiences I had collected over the years, and develop my own style.
In the meantime, I have established a shop in Berlin, enjoying the regular contact and exchange with clients and musicians in a city-workshop.