16 1/2" Marten Cornelissen viola, Northampton 1987
Marten Cornelissen (b.1936) is an award-winning Dutch violin maker. He initially studied engineering but became fascinated with making stringed instruments while in school. He repaired his first violin in his 20s and soon after decided to switch to studying violin making in the Czech Republic. He returned to his native of Holland to work and eventually emigrated to the United States to pursue a professional career as a violin maker. He settled in Northampton, Massachusetts, where he lives to this day. He was the recipient of silver and gold medals for quartet in the International Violin Making Competition in Liege, Belgium in 1966.
Now in his 80s, he continues making instruments. During his expansive, six-decade career, he has made more than 600 instruments, mostly violins and violas, with some cellos and guitars as well. High-profile musicians who owned Cornelissen instruments include Bernard Greenhouse, Yehudi Menuhin, Arnold Steinhardt, and Michael Tree.Length of back: 419 mm 16 1/2" and larger