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Baumgartner has been a well known name in violin making circles for more than 80 years. Fritz Baumgartner senior opened his business in Basel in 1920 and was later succeeded by his son, Fritz Baumgartner junior, who in turn initiated his own two sons, Roland and Michael Baumgartner, in the art of violin making.


firmenportraet baumgartnerRoland Baumgartner realised early that Switzerland could only offer a limited field and it was this reason that induced him to seek professional contacts abroad. Trips to France, England, Germany, Italy and the USA – sometimes just on a brief visit, sometimes for a much longer stay – enabled him to broaden his expertise and gain experience to such an extent that by 1974, he was able to set up his own business, the Atelier Roland Baumgartner, in Basel.


These days, the company specialises in the repair, restoration and sales of stringed instruments and bows. Roland Baumgartner's certificates of authenticity are recognised worldwide, as are his oral and written instrument appraisals and valuations, whether for private or for insurance purposes. He has written and co-authored a number of publications on violin making and is very much in demand as a speaker at conferences on the subject. He is frequently invited to participate as judge at international violin making competitions in Cremona, Paris, Freiburg, Mittenwald and the USA and was a member of the Comitato d'Honore for the Stradivari Exhibition in Cremona in 1987. In addition to providing expert advice for various other international exhibitions, he is on many occasions serving, both as an expert for the courts and as an appraiser for insurance companies both in Switzerland and abroad. As an active member of the International Society of Violin and Bow Makers (EILA) – of which he was President from 1991 to 1993 –, and of the Violin Society of America, he keeps in touch with experienced colleagues from all over the world, this being essential not only to his own professional development, but also to the pooling of experience and expertise.


firmenportraet reuterGertrud Reuter is Roland Baumgartner's highly competent assistant since 1988. Having trained in the art of violin making in Mittenwald, she passed the examination to become a Master Violin Maker in Stuttgart in 1991. Her first-class qualifications as a craftswoman and her professional approach to her trade have won her widespread esteem among customers. Although most of her time at the Atelier Roland Baumgartner is taken up with repairs and restoration work, she continues to build new instruments in her spare time, often inspired by the fine historical master instruments that pass through her hands at work.

 

Her professional commitments extend far beyond her work for Roland Baumgartner, however. She is an associate member of the International Society of Violin and Bow Makers (EILA), a member of the German Association of Violin and Bow Makers (VDG) and of the Violin Society of America (VSA). In 2001, she was invited to serve on the jury of the International Violin Making Competition in Mittenwald and has given a number of lectures both by invitation of the VDG and at various international congresses. She has also given guest lectures at the Violin Making School in Mittenwald and is invariably quick to seize on any opportunity of enhancing her own expertise in various aspects of violin making.

 

The Atelier Roland Baumgartner has a wide selection of instruments and bows, from simple and correctly set up student instruments to the very finest old master instruments and bows.

 

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