Born on June 30 1895 in Santa Mustiola, a village in the tiny republic of San Marino, Marino Capicchioni learnt woodworking from his father, a cooper. He worked in his father’s shop from an early age and taught himself the craft of violin making. His first instruments seem to have been produced in the early 1920s.
After a brief spell in France during 1928, Capicchioni returned home and set up his own workshop in Rimini in 1930. During the 1930s his reputation as a maker and restorer grew and he won an award for a quartet at the 1937 Cremona competition and exhibition, in which makers including Garimberti, Ornati, Pedrazzini and Sgarabotto also competed.
Capicchioni developed an international reputation during the 1950s and his instruments were bought and praised by musicians of the highest rank, among them Yehudi Menuhin and David Oistrakh.
In 1965 Capicchioni passed the running of his business to his son Mario, who had been assisting him for some time, but he continued to make instruments until his death in 1977.
This violin is from the 1950s, Capicchioni’s most productive and economically successful period. Labeled, “Marinus Capicchioni, feccit Arimini 1959,” it has a two piece back of quarter-sawn maple with like sides and a scroll from plainer wood. The top is two pieces of narrow grain spruce and the current condition is near excellent.
Capicchioni, Life and Works of Violin Makers Marino and Mario
by Marcello Villa
Marino Capicchioni e Mario Capicchioni, liutai
by Pio Sbrighi and Lorenzo Frignani
The instruments and bows are all available to view by appointment until June 29th in our New York office at 244-250 West 54th Street, 11th floor, New York (11am to 6pm, Monday to Friday). Please call 1.212.307.7224 to make an appointment.