The Great Contemporary Bowmakers of the 21st Century.-Vol.One


Andy Lim of Darling Publications will be releasing the first volume of his new book, “The Great Contemporary Bowmakers of the 21st Century” at Mondomusica 2011, Cremona Music Fair from 30 September until 2 October.  In the photo we see Mr. Hendricks from Kleve, Germany who is the artisan chosen to bind the massive book.  Each volume will be about the size of a viola case.

If you look closely the top page shows photos of four bows from the French bow maker or archetier Arthur Dubroca.  The bow photos in this book are unprecedented in that the bows are full size, to scale, and the entire bow is in perspective.  What do I mean by in perspective?  The entire bow is represented so that no matter what part of the bow you are looking at it will be seen as if you are looking squarely at it.  To achieve this perspective Andy had a special digital camera created just for photographing bows.  The bow is placed on a track that slowly passes under a digital camera.  The camera photographs the bow many times over nearly an hour while the bow passes underneath.  The photographs are then stitched together producing an image that is seen from directly in front throughout the whole image.  Andy’s work will help preserve for posterity not only the makers craftsmanship but also the dimensions of the bow as seen from the side and the shape of the camber.  It is very rare to find an old bow that still has it’s original camber and makers would dearly love to have this information.  If a book such as this one of the work of great makers of the past existed it would certainly be found in every contemporary maker’s shop.  Andy’s intention is to chronicle the work of each bow maker.  As such he has asked us to send him bows spanning our careers, from early work through the present.  Andy intends to publish a second volume in which he has been kind enough to include my work.

The list of makers for volume I include:

Morgan Andersen

Alexandre Aumont

Sylvain Bigot

Christophe Collinet

Franck Daguin

Arthur Dubroca

Pierre-Yves Fuchs

Josef P. Gabriel

Eric Grandchamp

Klaus Grünke

Tibor Kovacs

Yannick Le Canu

Tino Joh. Lucke

Johannes Miething

Mitsuaki Sasano

In producing these books Andy Lim has done a great service for bow making and more broadly the world of classical music.  There will be a very limited number of copies of this book produced.  These and Andy’s other fine publications will be available through Darling Publications

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19 Responses to “The Great Contemporary Bowmakers of the 21st Century.-Vol.One”

  1. andy lim Says:

    As first reply:

    Hi Robert and the fans of Robert (I am one of them and collect and play them with enthusiasm!)
    thanks for mentioning this publication.
    It is a modest (but not too) contribution to promote the work of today’s great contemporary makers.

    regards and greetings to everybody who appreciate sincerely todays bows.


  2. andy lim Says:

    As first reply:

    Hi Robert and fans of Robert Morrow’s work (I am one of the fans myself, and love collecting, but also playing his bows)!

    1. thanks for mentioning this publication.
    2. this publication is a modest (but not too!) contribution to the amazing quality of today’s contemporary bowmaking.
    3. looking forward myself to Vol. Two, when Robert Morrow, Ole Kanestrom, Charles Espey etc. etc. can display there work.

    Andy lim

  3. Lee Says:

    RE: The Great Contemporary Bowmakers of the 21st Century.-Vol.One

    Hi to Robert,

    This is a great blog and I enjoyed reading it, as well as seeing the images you’ve included, Robert! Anyone who plays your bows or anyone who, like me, appreciates the beauty of the materials can hear the “music” long before the hair touches the string.

  4. Robert Morrow Says:

    Thank you for the kind words. All the best…

  5. Violinholic Says:

    What about making the book in 3D pictures 🙂

  6. andy lim Says:

    Hi Violinholic, at the moment I am planning to do tests on rotating scans.


  7. Violinholic Says:

    When you are to publish this book, please send me e-mail 🙂

    In vol.2, Benoit Rolland will be included, too? I really enjoy my Rolland.

  8. Robert Morrow Says:

    Andy has published volume #1. I have a copy and it is beautifully done.

  9. Clare Says:

    I’d love to purchase this bow book. Is it yet available?

  10. Robert Morrow Says:

    I believe that copies are still available through Andy Lim at Darling Publications in Cologne, Germany. I own a copy. It is a beautiful book. Let me know if I can be of any further help.

  11. Violinholic Says:

    I’ve visited his website, but found it still under preparation. Any other distributors or e-mail that I could know the price or any information?

  12. andy lim Says:

    Hi Clare and Violinholic (and eventually others who are interested),

    Robert forewarded me the interest of you for this “book”. Please send me an email and I can mail some more images and details:

    The bookbinder is still stitching for all the orders, every new order takes more (waiting) time, seems it is becoming like ordering a great bow from the great contemporary makers!. At this moment 4 are being made for Japan. And after that 3 violinmakers/dealers in Germany are on the list. It just takes so much time to bind and deliver one and there are unfortunately so few opportunities to see one in real, but one by one they are being distributed. Belgium, Spain and Italy are the next countries to be “blessed” with one copy. really exiting to see these books being put on the “literally” map.
    It was great when Morgan Andersen won the Gold medal in Paris last year, there were already just 5 delivered that day in Paris. Many musicians who did not know yet his name here in Europe, were shown page 1 of this publication,where at their surprise Morgan was shown as the first of the 15 makers, as they were presented alphabetically.

  13. Victor Chou Says:

    Hi, Robert:

    I, like others, greatly enjoy reading your blogs and great looking and plyaing bows. I also have Andy’s life-sized Vol. 1 book. I do have couple of comments about this book. Because of its size, you almost have to have a big table to put and read it. And, you almost needs extra hand to hold it up while you flip pages. Otherwise, it is a nicely done and a first full-sized bow book ever published. One has to give Andy all the credits for undertaking such an almost impossible task, getting each maker to contribute 15 or so bows from various periods. He would had made a great diplomat for able to pull such a quest off and complete this book. Hope he will have continue success with Vol. 2. Just a bit awkward to handle. Wished Andy had spelled my last name correctly in the back of the book. Mightbe, you can correct that in volume two. I counted and realized I have bows from ten of the fifteen makers in Vol. 1
    By the way, Andy, try to include such makers as John Aniano, Emmanuel Begin, Noel Burke, Emmanuel Carlier, Charles Espey, Eric Fournier, Gary Leahy, Robert Morrow, Jean-Pascal Nehr, Gilles Nehr, Pierre Nehr, Stephane Thomachot, Gregory Walbrodt, and Matthew Wehling in Vol. 2 as I also own bows by those makers. Except John Aniano and J P Nehr, I have at least 2 bows from each maker. If you come up short, I can loan them to you for photographs.


  14. Robert Morrow Says:

    Hello Vic,
    Please excuse my late response. I was away on a spring trip to Montana and just returned.
    Thank you for your kind words and thoughts on Andy’s wonderful book. It is amazing that he could make it happen.

  15. andy lim Says:

    hallo Victor, hallo Robert,

    thanks for the encouraging words and support for volume 2!

    1. the missing of the “o” of Victor´s family name came because of several makers, asked to supply a list of people they want to be acknowledged their thanks, spelled his family name differently. As most of them pronounced the name as without an “o” i chose unfortunately the wrong one. Sorry Victor, ofcourse in volume 2 Victor´s name will be perfectly spelled!!
    But I am already most greatful that none of the 287 bows were swapped amoung each other or got the wrong makers name attached! can you imagine that from the Hungarian names, several different Kovacs spelled the “a” in their own name with different accents “á” AND “à”???!!!!

    2. everybody of the list you suggested has been asked already from the very beginning (2006!) and gradually since the last years to join in the book except for one…but I will contact him soon. Also others not named by Victor will be in the book like Ole Kanestrom, Dirk Löscher, Stephane Muller, Blaise Emmelin, Rüdiger Pfau etc. etc. But many were not really able or willing to help supply bows for the photography of 19 bows per maker. Somehow the energy level to call every 3 weeks remembring them did diminish in the last 6 years… Anybody with vast bow collections of contemporary makers like Victor or know people who could help me to photograph especially earlier work of the makers for Vol. 2, please drop me a line:

    3. concerning about the size: as the size is 90 x 35 cm closed, like a viola case, one do need a table to open the book. (like a viola case?)
    But flipping through with one hand does work well as the paper is not flimsy but printed on 300 gr. Profisilk (silk matt coated, fully dispersion varnished pages) and rock-solid.

    4. one can comfort oneself that Andy (moi!) has made even larger books: a life-size cello book of 160 x 60 closed and 120 cm wide when opened. Comparing with that book the Big Bow Book is quite compact and handy. Imagine the transport to Japan when the making is finished, as they are waiting for it, will cause some headache. A pallet is needed for this modest book!

    regards to all fans from the Big Bow Book
    (especially those with pain in the back from carrying this 7-kilo book)


  16. andy lim Says:

    images of 15 Micro Photo cello bows by the 15 presented bow makers, specially made for the publication at:

  17. Manuel Says:

    Hello! Where are exactly the copies of the book in Belgium and Spain? or are they private?

  18. andy lim Says:

    the books are made in Germany in an edition of 100.

  19. graceful Says:

    Great read

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