Publication Date : 27 July 2012
|Access free web app||
Print edition; text only
This book, in print and iPad editions, presents the stringed musical instruments in the Caldwell Collection of Viols, including fine, rare, and important examples by Amati, Bertrand, Norman, Rose, Tielke, and others.
Lavishly illustrated listings provide:
The book is a moving and humorous memoir as well as a catalogue, telling the story of how the collection was shaped by the forty-year musical life together of its principals, and by their conviction that “instruments, no matter how beautiful, are meant to be played and heard, not just looked at.”
This publication is partially funded by a Kickstarter campaign during March 2012 that raised funds for a large enough print run to enable us to publish the app, and especially the print edition, at much lower prices than would otherwise have been the case. Thanks to all who backed the project!
“The Caldwell Collection of Viols, put together with exquisite care over several decades, is one of the most extraordinary private assemblages of such instruments in the world. Its contents far overshadow the viola da gamba holdings of most of the world’s major musical instrument museums. Until recently, the only way to experience the collection was to journey to the small mid-western town of Oberlin, Ohio, but that has changed with the appearance of Catharina Meints Caldwell’s new book, The Caldwell Collection of Viols: A Life Together in Pursuit of Beauty. The volume, handsomely illustrated with numerous photographs of each instrument by Roger Mastroianni, brings together essays by musicologist Thomas MacCracken on the eighteen makers represented, as well as descriptions of each instrument by the noted contemporary viol builder John Pringle.”
“It is the charming narrative by Mrs. Caldwell, however, that makes reading the volume such a pleasure. She discusses the musical qualities of each of the twenty-two instruments (qualities she deftly illustrates in the accompanying audio, on which she plays each) from the standpoint of a virtuoso performer, and also conveys “the thrill of the chase,” recounting how she and her late husband, the oboist and gamba player James Boone Caldwell, discovered and acquired one antique viol after another. Her descriptions, written in a relaxed and quasi-conversational tone, well convey the connoisseur’s passion for her subject, and offer a rare glimpse not only into a rarefied corner of music, but also into musical instruments and antiques. The book is an important contribution to organology and to the literature on collecting, and will be appreciated by a wide audience, from reference librarians to early music enthusiasts, collectors, and those simply looking for a good musical yarn.”
– Kenneth Slowik, Curator of Musical Instruments, Smithsonian institution