Until recently, Gioffredo Cappa was generally believed to have been a pupil of Enrico Catenari, but current scholars consider this unlikely. What is clear from his work is that he was heavily influenced by the Amatis, the leading violin makers of his day. In the 19th century Cappa was thought to have been an Amati pupil, and this goes some way to explain the frequency of Amati labels in Cappa’s instruments.
In Cappa’s early work the ribs are often set into the back in the style of the Dutch and Flemish makers of the time. His later instruments, however, owe a distinct debt to Cremona, although they seldom match the refinement of Cremonese work.
The theory that he was assisted in his later years by two apprentices, Spirito Sorsana and Giovanni Francesco Celoniati, is contradicted by the work of those two makers, which bears little resemblance to Cappa’s style.