Marchi, Giovanni Antonio
- Philip J. Kass
(b San Nicolò di Villola nr. Bologna, Italy, April 24, 1727; d Bologna, Dec 20, 1807). Italian violin maker. Born into a family of carpenters, he moved to Bologna about 1745 and became a violin maker about 1755–56. He might have studied under one of the Fiorini family. His fame comes not from his rare instruments but from a manuscript on violin making that he completed in 1786, one of the earliest known. His instructions are still quite familiar to modern violin makers. He had a considerable reputation as a violin restorer, and in 1805 was approached by Count Cozio di Salabue to serve in that capacity in Milan.
Marchi’s violins are typical of Bolognese work of the period and follow a model similar to that of Guidante: full in arching and very rounded in outline. The f-hole is usually placed at an angle and his scrolls have large and broad volutes. His varnish is also typically Bolognese, richer but firm in texture and ranging from a lighter gold to a golden brown. Because his work is so little known, his name has often been placed in otherwise unidentifiable instruments....