Menu

Michele Angelo Bergonzi

The eldest son and pupil of Carlo Bergonzi, born in 1721, Michele Angelo’s earliest work is dated 1744, shortly before he moved, with his father, into the Stradivari house in Cremona in 1745. This followed the death of Francesco, the last violin maker of the Stradivari family in 1743, and much of the Bergonzis’ time was devoted to the finishing of instruments left in the workshop. Carlo died in 1747 and Michele Angelo lived only until 1758, when he died aged 37, explaining his rather meagre output. This is due not only to his occupation in the Stradivari shop, but also to the decline in Cremona’s situation generally, following the death of its other great maker, Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesù, in 1744. Michele Angelo’s work, however, is a very interesting reflection of the period and exhibits a surprising influence from del Gesù as well as Stradivari, with a similar spontaneity and freedom of execution. Some instruments can be ranked very highly even amongst his Cremonese peers, but he was not greatly consistent and some are made from quite poor quality materials, again illustrating the general poverty in the craft at the time. Similarly his varnish varies from the very beautifully deep-tinted and richly-textured coating of the best Cremonese, to a relatively thin and pale varnish commonly used elsewhere.

Michele Angelo Bergonzi

(Cremona, b 1721; d 1758)

The eldest son and pupil of Carlo Bergonzi, born in 1721, Michele Angelo’s earliest work is dated 1744, shortly before he moved, with his father, into the Stradivari house in Cremona in 1745. This followed the death of Francesco, the last violin maker of the Stradivari family in 1743, and much of the Bergonzis’ time was devoted to the finishing of instruments left in the workshop. Carlo died in 1747 and Michele Angelo lived only until 1758, when he died aged 37, explaining his rather meagre output. This is due not only to his occupation in the Stradivari shop, but... Read more

Instruments we have sold by this maker

Articles

Four centuries of violin making

17 September 2018 - Dilworth, John

Why Cremona? The classical violin, one of the great cultural symbols of Western civilisation, is an almost entirely Italian phenomenon. In the pages of this book — perhaps the most comprehensive survey published to date of fine concert and collectible... Read more

Violin set to fetch up to £150,000

22 March 2014

ARTICLE EXTRACT A 260-year-old violin used as a concert instrument by acclaimed soloist Leila Josefowicz is set to fetch up to £150,000 at auction. The violin, believed to be by leading 18th Century Italian maker Michele Angelo Bergonzi, helped launch... Read more

Looking to Buy or Sell an Instrument by this Maker?

Selling with Ingles & Hayday

We offer buyers and sellers a bespoke private sale service, sourcing exceptional instruments and bows and matching them with the most discerning buyers...

More Information

Buying at Ingles & Hayday

Tim Ingles and Paul Hayday will offer an initial evaluation of the authenticity and value of your instrument or bow to recommend an auction estimate and reserve price for your instrument or bow...

Enquire

Written Valuations & Certificates

Tim Ingles and Paul Hayday will offer an initial evaluation of the authenticity and value of your instrument or bow. At this stage, the assessment is free and without obligation. In the first instance, we suggest submitting good-quality images to us, preferably by email to info@ingleshayday.com or by completing the valuation form.

Read more

Buying at Ingles & Hayday

We hold two auctions a year at Sotheby’s in London, generally in March and October. We also have a selection of instruments and bows for private sale all year round. Please contact us for more information.

Back to Notable Sales