Alessandro Gagliano

Highest auction price achieved
£ 138650.00

By George Hart

A pupil of Antonio Stradivari. The Gagliano family played no un-important part in the art of Italian Violinmaking. It commences with Alessandro, who imitated his master as regards the form which he gave to his instruments. Alessandro Gagliano upon leaving the workshop of Stradivari removed to Naples, a city which afforded him greater scope for the" exercise of his talents than Cremona. With others, he felt that his chance of success was very small if he remained on ground occupied by the greatest luminaries of his art. His labours at Naples seem to have been so well rewarded that he caused his sons to follow his calling. There is evidence of their having enjoyed what may be termed a monopoly of the Violin manufacture in and around Naples, there being no record of another maker of importance in that locality at the same period. To these makers we are indebted for the Neapolitan School. Although in its productions we miss the lustrous varnish and handsome wood of Cremona, Naples has furnished us with many excellent instruments. The works of Alessandro Gagliano are mostly of large pattern and flat model. If we compare them with those of his master, the resemblance is not so great as might be expected, if it be remembered that they are copies, and not original works. The sound-holes are broader and more perpendicular than those of Stradivari. The scroll is diminutive, and the turn much contracted and of a somewhat mean appearance. The workmanship of this item is roughly executed, and points to the conclusion that Alessandro Gagliano was not gifted with the power of head-cutting. The character of Gagliano's Violins reminds us of those by Stradivari made between 1725 and 1730; and doubtless it was those instruments which this artist chiefly copied. The wood used for the backs was generally of a tough nature; the back and sides are often marked with a broad curl. The bellies are of wide and even grain, and very resonant. The varnish is quite distinct from that of Cremona ; it is very transparent, and of various shades, chiefly yellow.

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Price History

Type Title Sold Price
Violin 35.7 cm 1790 c. Sat 1st March 08 £ 7605.00
Violin 35.3 cm Naples, 1720 c. [Lit: The Cooper Collection] Sat 1st March 08 £ 36500.00
Violin 35.4 cm Naples, 1720 c. (varnish later & scroll by "Giuseppe Gagliano) Mon 1st October 07 £ 82817.00
Violin 35.6 cm Naples, 1702 Sun 1st April 07 £ 103103.00
Violin 35.1 cm Naples, 1720 The scroll by Giovanni Battista Rogeri Wed 1st November 06 £ 63154.00
Cello Naples, 1724 Tue 1st February 05 £ 86400.00
Violin [Attributed to] Thu 1st July 04 £ 3824.00
Cello 1709 Fri 1st November 02 £ 138650.00
Violin 1720 Tue 1st October 02 £ 45888.00
Violin 1709 Mon 1st November 99 £ 123743.00
Cello 1700 c. Wed 1st November 95 £ 80700.00
Violin 1700 c. Stradivari top, with Provenance & Lit. Wed 1st June 88 £ 38500.00
Violin 1715 c. Tue 1st March 88 £ 33000.00
Violin 1700 c. Sun 1st March 81 £ 10651.00

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