This is a fine Milanese violin POSSIBLY by Erminio Farina, the main assistant of Riccardo Antoniazzi. Farina was chosen by Antoniazzi to make the instruments for the Milan Exhibition of 1906. He then worked very closely with Antoniazzi who, due to poor health, had to work at home. Upon Antoniazzi’s death, Farina became his successor and continued working in his master’s shop. Unfortunately, Farina died shortly after during World War I. The violin is branded with Farina’s characteristic label below the neck button, above and beside where the label should be, on the upper interior block and to the right of the upper block on the inside back and also at least two locations on the inside of the top, one in the upper bout and another just north of the soundpost.
Nancy, 1933. Gustave Villaume was born in Mirecourt and studied with Mougenot and Jacquet Gand before going to Paris to work with Caressa & Français. After moving to Nancy, he won numerous awards for his work.
BELOW: A violin labelled "Enrico Ceruti fecit Cremona 1865" but more likely Romanian late 1800s according to experts that have examined this old violin. Its a gorgeous old thing with birds eye maple back and sides and the entire violin is a glorious Italian red over golden ground that is visible in heavy worn areas. It has a wonderful glow to it, and sounds outstanding. It has new ebony fittings, and a nice set of strings. The entire violin has been overhauled and is tight and solid and ready for another hundred years of play. Dan you tell its my favorite?
below: A violin presented as being the work of GUSTAVE VUILLAUME of Nancy, and made about 1950. Vuillaume is a French maker and the label reads "lutherie Artistique copie de Antonius Stradiuarius Cremonenfis Faciebat Anno 1721". Although not shows with new fittings it will have boxwood fittings and Eva Parazzi Gold strings in the coming days. It is a penetrating and bright sounding instrument .