Victor Fétique cello bow circa 1920
Victor Fétique cello bow branded Léon Bernardel Paris, Paris circa 1920
One of the most renowned bow makers at the turn of the 20th century, Victor François Fétique (1872 - 1933) was born in Mirecourt, France into a family of luthiers. Son of violin maker Charles-Claude Fétique (1853 - 1911), Victor and his brother Jules Fétique (1875 - 1951) studied bow making in various Mirecourt workshops, including those of Jean-Baptiste Husson, Sigisbert Fourrier Maline, and Paul Émile Miquel, before working for Charles Nicolas Bazin II. Both brothers took jobs in Paris: Victor joined Caressa & Français in 1901, and Jules joined Eugéne Sartory's shop in 1902.
In 1913, Victor Fétique established his own workshop, where his son Marcel Gaston Fétique (1899 - 1977), and his nephew André Richaume also trained as bow makers. Victor employed numerous celebrated bow makers, including Claude Thomassin, Louis Morizot, Auguste Toussaint, Claude Rémy, Paul Weidhaas, and André Vigneron (Vigneron fils), while also occasionally collaborating with his brother. Fétique's prolific shop produced bows for many French violin firms who stamped the bows with their own brands, including Léon Bernardel (such as the cello bow offered here), Collin-Mezin, Chanot & Chardon, Paul Jombar, Maucotel & Dechamp, and Alfred Vidoudez.
Fétique bows are very highly regarded and sought after by professional players and collectors.