“A violin maker can make the most beautiful violin in the world and a bowmaker the finest bow, but if by chance wood is not exactly as it should be, the whole work is unusable … There must be an objective way of measuring the goodness of wood a priori, before working it, I kept repeating myself … I knew that what I was looking for existed, suspended somewhere, at the top, it was enough to reach out to grab it like in a cosmic treasure hunt. It is up to us to discover them, to make good use of them”
Presented at Mondomusica, Cremona, in September 2012, just over a month after the death of the master, the book is an autobiography of the great bow-maker Giovanni Lucchi. From his pages, one after the other emerge the memories of his life: from his native Cesena, to Cremona, through his studies in the conservatory, the experience of work abroad, the return home, the theater of Bologna, “his” school. The relationships with the father, the wife, the children, the friends, the colleagues, the great interpreters. Research as a meaning of life.
“We listened to him, helping him to put a little – not too much – order between his memories. Since he was a child, he climbed onto the stool to face the double bass, much higher than he was, when he devised an empirical method to measure the transmissibility of wood, since he played with friends up and down the Romagna Riviera until he has earned the trust of Rostropovich, giving him an elastic and leaping bow as his intelligence, like his passion” say the two curators of the work: Louisette di Suni e Alessandra Mascaretti.
An autobiography that the master Lucchi has not written in his own hand, therefore, but where the touch of his hand is clearly felt. The hand used to play the double bass, to caress the wood, to separate the horse-hair, to assemble, disassemble, smooth, polish. A hand always in tune with the inner frequency of his soul, tense in the confident and tenacious pursuit of perfect frequency. A hand that wanted to draw the different moments of his life, reconstructing a series of events always animated by the inner passion, by the desire to overcome their limits, as when he was a child climbed on a stool to be able to play the double bass. A hand that has been able to ask and receive. A hand protagonist of the passionate research, which emerges fresh from the pages of the book, accompanying the reader to grasp the dense network of relationship between people, places, facts, emotions, questions and answers that have made the life of Giovanni Lucchi a passionate journey towards a single goal: the “bel suono”.
Giovanni Lucchi, bass player, bow maker and experimenter he has often published the results of his most significant research in important magazines. Among his most important articles, we remember: LucchiMeter, in The Strad, June 1988; The Use of Empirical and Scientific Methods to Measure the Velocity of Propagation of Sound, in The Violin Society of America Journal, 2, 1988; How to Visualize The Bel Suono in Real Time, in The Violin Society of America Journal, 2, 1998; Repairing a bow using a toothed patch, in The Strad, October 2008.