$9.44 Million: Baltic Guarneri Violin Sets Record as Third Most Expensive Musical Instrument Sold at Auction
Березень 21, 2023

The sale price makes the violin, one thousand seven hundred thirty-one, the third most expensive instrument ever sold at auction A violin made by the well-known luthier Gippe 'del Gesu' Guarneri has fetched a price of $9.44 million (£7.74 million) at auction in the US - a record for a violin made by Guarneri. The circa one thousand seven hundred thirty-one ‘Baltic’ Guarneri was sold by auctioneers Tarisio on sixteenth March. The sale price was the third-highest auction sale price ever achieved for a musical instrument. The instrument also went for more than double the previous record for a Guarneri instrument sold at auction. he ‘Baltic’ was previously a portion of the family collection of Asian-American businessman Sau-Wing Lam (1923-1988). A musician and collector, Sau-Wing Lam also supported youthful musicians throughout his lifetime. ‘To sell this extraordinary violin for nearly triple the previous auction record price for a Guarneri demonstrates the strength of global demand for scarce and historic musical instruments,’ said Carlos Tomé, Tarisio’s director and head of sales.

‘We are delighted to have been entrusted with the sale of the “Baltic” and to celebrate the heritage of Sau-Wing Lam, one of the grand benefactors and collectors in the field of classical music.’ The instrument was previously seen, alongside twenty-five other Guarneri violins, in a one thousand nine hundred ninety-four exhibition of Guarneri’s work at the Metropolitan Mum of Art in New York. The catalogue for that indicate well-known that the 'Baltic' represents ‘the first fruit of new ideas, heralding a new phase in del Gesù’s career’. The instrument is presently the most expensive Guarneri ever sold at auction. If private sales are taken into account, however, the most expensive Guarneri ever sold is the ‘Vieuxtemps’, which fetched more than $15.9 million in a private sale in two thousand-thirteenth.

That instrument is presently played by violinist Anne Akiko Meyers, who's it on a lifetime loan. Another well-known Guarneri instrument is the one thousand seven hundred forty-one 'Kreisler' violin, so named beca the well-known violinist Fritz Kreisler was a previous owner ( 1904-17). That one shouldn't be confd with the one thousand seven hundred thirty-three 'Kreisler' Guarneri, another 'del Gesù' previously owned by Kreisler and presently owned by the Lib of Congress in WA DC.

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