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My historical bows

A bow for each age

In my opinion, in order to make the most of the interpretative techniques of each period, and enjoy them, it is essential to use an appropriate bow. It is not the same thing to play Fontana, Castello or Frescobaldi than Bach; Biber or Schmelzer than Vivaldi; Ortiz than Marais. The concept “a bow for everything”, so present today in the world of historical bows, did not convince me. This led me to immerse myself in the investigation of the different types of bow that could be used at each time. The examples that have survived from those times are scarce, so I have sought my inspiration on various treatises of that era (Simpson, Ganassi, Pretorius …) and, above all, on ancient paintings in which the existing instruments and bows were represented.

Materials:

I really love wood, that is why I use many kinds of wood, not only the usual snakewood, but always respecting the appropriate qualities of density and elasticity.

For bows until early 17 century, I use european hard woods, like yew, beech wood, maple and some fruitwood. Although tropical wood was already known in the early 1600, it is very probably that bow makers still used local woods. Sometimes I like to brighten up this bows, using some exotic woods to make the frogs.

For bows from mid 17 century onwards, I use tropical woods like snakewood, ironwood, bloodwood or pernambuco, that is known were used.

Some of my historical bows

Baroque violin bow "Acquavella"

Baroque violin bow ca. 1600. Own design inspired by the painting “Still-Life with a Violinist” by Master Of  the Acquavella Still-Life.

Length: 62,5 cm.

Weight: 34 gr.

Maple stick and walnut clip-in frog

Baroque violin bow "Acquavella"

Baroque violin bow ca. 1600. Own design inspired by the painting “Still-Life with a Violinist” by Master Of  the Acquavella Still-Life.

Length: 62,5 cm.

Weight: 34 gr.

Maple stick and walnut clip-in frog

Baroque violin bow "Gentileschi"

Baroque violin bow ca. 1620. Own design inspired by Orazio Gentileschi’s painting “Young woman playing a violin”.

Length: 62 cm.
Weight: 40 gr.

Beech wood stick and goldfield clip-in frog

Baroque violin bow "Gentileschi"

Baroque violin bow ca. 1620. Own design inspired by Orazio Gentileschi’s painting “Young woman playing a violin”.

Length: 62 cm.
Weight: 40 gr.

Beech wood stick and goldfield clip-in frog

Baroque violin bow "Cabal"

Baroque violin bow ca. 1665. Own design inspired by the bows that appear in the painting “The Cabal Ministry” by Jean Baptiste Medina.

Length: 65,5 cm.

Weight: 47 gr.

Pernambuco stick and Olive wood clip-in frog

Baroque violin bow "Cabal"

Baroque violin bow ca. 1665. Own design inspired by the bows that appear in the painting “The Cabal Ministry” by Jean Baptiste Medina.

Length: 65,5 cm.

Weight: 47 gr.

Pernambuco stick and Olive wood clip-in frog

Baroque violin bow "Long sonata"

Baroque violin bow, early 18th century. Own design in the “long sonata bow” style.

Length: 71,5 cm.
Weight: 51 gr.

Pau d’arco stick and olive wood clip-in frog

Baroque violin bow "Long sonata"

Baroque violin bow, early 18th century. Own design in the “long sonata bow” style.

Length: 71,5 cm.
Weight: 51 gr.

Pau d’arco stick and olive wood clip-in frog

Classical violin bow "Edward Dodd"

Classical violin bow after an original bow possibly by Edward Dodd ca. 1780 that is in the Birmingham Conservatoire’s Historical Instrument Collection 

Length: 72,4 cm.

Weight: 58 gr.

Bloodwood stick and mammoth ivory frog and button

Classical violin bow "Edward Dodd"

Classical violin bow after an original bow possibly by Edward Dodd ca. 1780 that is in the Birmingham Conservatoire’s Historical Instrument Collection 

Length: 72,4 cm.

Weight: 58 gr.

Bloodwood stick and mammoth ivory frog and button

Baroque viola bow "Staedler"

Baroque viola bow ca. 1714, after an original bow by Kaspar Staedler.

Length: 67,2 cm.
Weight: 55 gr.

Ebony stick and flamed jarrah clip-in frog

Baroque viola bow "Staedler"

Baroque viola bow ca. 1714, after an original bow by Kaspar Staedler.

Length: 67,2 cm.
Weight: 55 gr.

Ebony stick and flamed jarrah clip-in frog

Baroque viola bow "Late model"

Baroque viola bow, early 18th century model. Own design .

Length: 72 cm.

Weight: 59 gr.

Pernambuco stick and Olive wood frog and button

Baroque viola bow "Late model"

Baroque viola bow, early 18th century model. Own design .

Length: 72 cm.

Weight: 59 gr.

Pernambuco stick and Olive wood frog and button

Classical viola bow "John Dodd"

Classical viola bow after an original bow by John Dodd , late 18th century, that is in the Birmingham Conservatoire’s Historical Instrument Collection. Cramer style head.

Length: 72,5 cm.
Weight: 59 gr.

Pau d’arco stick and olive wood frog and button. French silk winding.

Classical viola bow "John Dodd"

Classical viola bow after an original bow by John Dodd , late 18th century, that is in the Birmingham Conservatoire’s Historical Instrument Collection. Cramer style head.

Length: 72,5 cm.
Weight: 59 gr.

Pau d’arco stick and olive wood frog and button. French silk winding.

Baroque cello bow "continuo"

Baroque cello bow, early 18th century model. Own model specially designed for continuo playing.

Length: 72 cm.

Weight: 77 gr.

Pernambuco stick and ebony frog and button

Baroque cello bow "continuo"

Baroque cello bow, early 18th century model. Own model specially designed for continuo playing.

Length: 72 cm.

Weight: 77 gr.

Pernambuco stick and ebony frog and button

Baroque cello bow S.XVIII

Baroque cello bow after an original german bow that is in the Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien.

Length: 74,9 cm.
Weight: 82 gr.

Snakewood stick and frog, mammoth ivory button.

Baroque cello bow S.XVIII

Baroque cello bow after an original german bow that is in the Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien.

Length: 74,9 cm.
Weight: 82 gr.

Snakewood stick and frog, mammoth ivory button.

Classical cello bow "John Dodd"

Classical cello bow after an original bow possibly by John Dodd ca. 1780, that is in the Birmingham Conservatoire’s Historical Instrument Collection.

Length: 70,7 cm.
Weight: 70 gr.

Ironwood stick and mammoth ivory frog and button. French silk winding.

Classical cello bow "John Dodd"

Classical cello bow after an original bow possibly by John Dodd ca. 1780, that is in the Birmingham Conservatoire’s Historical Instrument Collection.

Length: 70,7 cm.
Weight: 70 gr.

Ironwood stick and mammoth ivory frog and button. French silk winding.

Renaissance bass viol bow "Bologna"

Renaissance bass viol bow. Own model inspired by an original bow that belongs to Accademia Filarmonica di Bologna since 1608.

Length: 74 cm.

Weight: 65 gr.

Beech wood stick and walnut clip-in frog.

Renaissance bass viol bow "Bologna"

Renaissance bass viol bow. Own model inspired by an original bow that belongs to Accademia Filarmonica di Bologna since 1608.

Length: 74 cm.

Weight: 65 gr.

Beech wood stick and walnut clip-in frog

Renaissance bass viol bow "Veronese"

Renaissance bass viol bow. Own design inspired by the bows that appear in the painting “The Wedding Fest at Cana” by Veronese.

Length: 76 cm.
Weight: 69 gr.

Beech wood stick and redwood clip-in frog.

Renaissance bass viol bow "Veronese"

Renaissance bass viol bow. Own design inspired by the bows that appear in the painting “The Wedding Fest at Cana” by Veronese.

Length: 76 cm.
Weight: 69 gr.

Beech wood stick and redwood clip-in frog.

French bass viol bow

Bass viol bow in french style. Own design.

Length: 78 cm.

Weight: 77 gr.

Ebony stick and frog, bone button.

French bass viol bow

Bass viol bow in french style. Own design.

Length: 78 cm.

Weight: 77 gr.

Ebony stick and frog, bone button.

Baroque bass viol bow "Langham"

Bass viol bow, own design inspired by the bow that appears in the portrait of Sir John Langham, painted by F. Kerseboom on 1683.

Length: 75 cm.

Weight: 73 gr.

Ironwood stick, mammoth ivory clip-in frog and button.

Baroque bass viol bow "Langham"

Bass viol bow, own design inspired by the bow that appears in the portrait of Sir John Langham, painted by F. Kerseboom on 1683.

Length: 75 cm.

Weight: 73 gr.

Ironwood stick, mammoth ivory clip-in frog and button.

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