Image of a violin, a cira 1830-1850  Eckhardt-Gramatte Joachim Georges Chanot I violin

ca. 1830-1850 Eckhardt-Gramatte Joachim Georges Chanot I violin

This violin was one of twelve instruments owned by the Hungarian violinist Joseph Joachim (1831-1907). While in the possession of Joachim, the violin was inventoried as the work of J.B. Vuillaume. More recently, the violin has been identified and certified as the work of Georges Chanot I, circa 1830-1850.

Georges Chanot I was born in Mirecourt, France in 1801. He moved to Paris in 1819 to work for his older brother, Joseph, alongside another apprentice, J.B. Vuillaume. Both men later became known as the foremost violin experts in France. Georges Chanot I’s fame was due in part to his exceptional bench copies of Guarnerius Del Gesu violins. These violins were always made with select materials, both for their beauty and sound production.

Joseph Joachim’s daughter-in-law, Suzanne Chaigneau, gave this violin to Russian-German-Austrian-Canadian composer, pianist, and violinist Sophie-Carmen (Sonia) Eckhardt-Gramatté, when Sonia was about 16 years old. In 1915, Suzanne wrote in her diary, “I have sent Sonia the little violin ‘vieux Paris.’” Sonia played all her concerts on this violin and made recordings for Odeon with it.

This instrument has a one piece back and displays a strong figure descending slightly from left to right. The ribs and the scroll are of matching materials. The two piece top is a medium width grain that widens at the flanks. The varnish is a rich red over amber and was antiqued by the maker.

Donor: loan from The Winnipeg Foundation (formerly from the Eckhardt-Grammaté Foundation)
Acquired: 2017


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