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PIETRO GALLINOTTI
LUTHIER IN SOLERO 
1885 . 1979

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GUITAR PIETRO GALLINOTTI
Soleros 1939

 

YEAR:  1939

SOUNDBOARD:  Italian Spruce

BACK & SIDES:  Mahogany 

FORK:  650 mm

VARNISH: Shellac

Gallinotti was well known for his production of stringed instruments in which he reached remarkable levels. He began building guitars around 1915, in particular drawing inspiration from historical authors such as the Guadagninis.

 

With an inversely proportional production of stringed instruments, it was after the 1930s that a more assiduous interest in the guitar began to show, which gradually became his only interest as a luthier and builder.

This slender and delicate, light and essential model very clearly expresses his vision of the guitar of the time.

Pietro Gallinotti was a luthier, one of the most representative of the Italian twentieth century.

Born in Solero, a historic town in the province of Alessandria in 1885, as a young man he began to cultivate his passion for stringed instruments by playing mandolin and guitar with friends.

At the end of his military service, around 1909, a fellow villager invited him to Savigliano in the Cuneo area to work in the railway carriage manufacturing workshops. Thanks to the large amount of wood available, Pietro perfected his manual skills as a cabinetmaker.

In 1915 He was called up to arms and ended up, a prisoner, in a Czechoslovakian concentration camp where he managed to express and communicate his passion for wood and violin making by attracting the attention of the director who asked him to replicate a violin. After the Great War he found work in Genoa at an artistic furniture factory. In Genoa he had the opportunity to meet and attend the luthier Cesare Candi. The Genoese experience transformed him into a full-time luthier: he returned to Solero and set up his workshop at his home.

In 1925 he married Teresa Guasco and in less than ten years Pietro Gallinotti found himself among the great names of international violin making. He began by making violins, and around the 1930 began to step up the production of guitars. In 1929, their son Carlo was born. In 1937 is mentioned in the dictionary of Italian guitarists and luthiers: "He builds guitars that can be judged perfect, in terms of acoustics and elegance of shapes, such as to satisfy our best guitarists, most of whom own their instruments and keep them in the utmost consideration."

He was esteemed for his value and his modesty; quality that many recognized in him. Pietro Gallinotti always dealt personally with the guitarists who would later play his instrument. He spares no effort in always keeping the client informed on the state of the works and communicating the end with the ability to satisfy the best concert players of the time. When it came to distant customers, he personally went to wait for them at the train station and often invited them to lunch.

In the 1940s Gallinotti's art spread throughout Europe up to the Americas. In 1952 the "National Competition of Violin Making for Classical Guitar" consecrated Pietro Gallinotti among the great names of Italian violin making. On that occasion the guitarist Alirio Diaz, a young pupil of Segovia, who became an admirer of the Monferrato master's guitars. In 1949 Gallinotti met Segovia at the end of the only concert that the guitarist gave in Alessandria.

Around the 1950s Pietro Gallinotti produced the last bowed instruments. In that period he decided to devote himself exclusively, given the increasing number of requests and awards, to the production of guitars. However, he wanted to leave tangible proof of his artistic level gained over many years of work and passion by completing an instrument begun in 1934: a viola d'amore. In the 1960s Gallinotti's fame was further consolidated: as a guitar maker he was recognized as the best of all. He continued to work with the usual spirit, studying and experimenting. In January 1979 his wife Gina died and in May, while he was working in the historic laboratory, he suffered a stroke. A few days later it passed away.

PIETRO GALLINOTTI GUITAR
Solero 1942 - ex Benvenuto Terzi

YEAR: 1942

SOUNDBOARD:  Italian Spruce

BACK & SIDES:  Mahogany

FORK:  650 mm

VARNISH:  Shellac

Guitar strongly inspired by the historical Spanish models, from which he drew inspiration to experiment with the acoustic adoption of the "Tornavoz",

a particular object which, as the name implies, was placed under the rosette to create an amplifying effect of the sound emission.

Pietro Gallinotti also had to deal with the need to "keep pace" with the strong success of Spanish lutherie, and produced some instruments with devices and structural solutions that could be welcomed with interest and satisfaction even by the numerous concert players fascinated by the sound characteristics offered by the Iberian guitars.

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