Carlo Chiesa has been involved in violin making for a over 40 years. Graduated from the Milan School of Lutherie under the guidance of Renato Scrollavezza and Luca Primon, he is currently the Master of a workshop in his city of Milan. He has collaborated with numerous important luthiers in Italy and abroad, but his main masters are the great luthiers of the past, whose works he studies with unceasing passion. In addition to construction of new instruments and restoration of ancient ones, he is particularly interested in setup, always aiming to obtain the best from the instruments musicians entrust to his care, tailoring the sound in collaboration with performers. His study of ancient instruments made him an appreciated expert in identifying Italian violins of the 17 th and 18th Century, a field in which he is particularly specialized, also following his extensive archival research. Carlo wrote studies and articles on ancient instruments and luthiers and has a wide bibliography both for specialists and a more informative level for a general audience of passionates. He is regularly invited to present his studies and share his knowledge at meetings for luthiers and experts and has been a judge at major international violin making competitions, including the Indianapolis competition (2014) and Cremona (2021). For more than twenty years he has been a member of the International Association of Violin Makers (EILA).
The main activity of the workshop is the construction of new instruments (violins, violas, cellos), much appreciated by musicians for their excellent acoustic qualities. Trying to better understand the functional characteristics of the instruments of the modern quartet, for several years Carlo has dedicated himself to the study and construction of their precursors, the viols, achieving excellent results in this area. Even today, on order, he builds baroque instruments for a small circle of specialized musicians, always after discussing with performers the musical characteristics required in the instrument to be made. Carlo’s workshop is also a renowned center for the restoration of valuable antique instruments. Always attentive to the musical aspect of each instrument, and interested in understanding and knowing how to replicate the characteristics of the authors of the past, in a violin Carlo always sees first and foremost the working tool that allows a musician to best express his art. For this reason, his work is often required for the fine tuning and sound optimization of antique instruments: working closely with many interpreters, even of great fame, he has developed an experience that allows him, dialoguing with musicians and intervening on different aspects of the setup, to bring instruments to their best and most suitable sound result, with a particular attention to the personal characteristics of the sound research of each performer.