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Pietro Giovanni Mantegazza, Milan circa 1780

Catalog ID: C-2009

Patriarch of the celebrated Mantegazza family of luthiers, Pietro Giovanni Mantegazza (c. 1730 - 1803) was a student of Carlo Ferdinando Landolfi in Milan, Italy. With his brother Domenico (fl. 1776 - 1783), Pietro established a family business, employing his sons Francesco (1762 - 1824), Antonio (1766 - 1790), and Carlo (1772 - 1814), later known as "Fratelli Mantegazza."

Active at the end of the 18th century through the first quarter of the 19th century, the Mantegazza workshop was one of the earliest full-service violin shops, providing repair, restoration, modernization, and authentication of older instruments, in addition to producing newly made ones. The shop was acclaimed and patronized by the virtuosos of the day, including Nicolò Paganini, and by the violin collector and connoisseur Count Cozio of Salabue, who entrusted the maintenance of his extensive collection of important Cremonese instruments to the Mantegazzas. After dissolving his business relationship with Giovanni Battista Guadagnini in 1777, Cozio also employed the Mantegazza workshop to varnish, setup, and trade many unfinished instruments he’d commissioned from Guadagnini.

Considered the best maker of the Mantegazza family, Pietro Giovanni Mantegazza's scarce violins are very highly esteemed.

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