Galen Hartley builds violins

For me, violin making is essentially a question of sensitivity and generosity. Certainly there are endless other factors involved in the creation of an instrument, but working with as much care, attention and spirit as possible in order to offer a  musician something truly inspiring to work with… That’s pretty much where it’s at for me.

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I aspire to emulate the elegance of classical Italian forms and the vitality apparent in the work of great makers past and present. When grace and gesture supersede precision and symmetry, or when an instrument’s tonal palette can be felt in a single resonant note… Well, those are marvelous things.

I began my career in 2006 as an apprentice to Kim Tipper in Victoria, BC, and have continued my education in Montreal and France working with wildly talented and generous people such as Isabelle Wilbaux, Wolfram Neureither, Nicolas Gilles, Tony Échavidre and in the workshops of Tom Wilder and Olivier Pérot.

Since 2011 I have dedicated myself to  building new violins. I am committed to the refinement of my craft and continue to be inspired by the passion and devotion of the makers and musicians that I have had the good fortune to work with and learn from. I love my work.

Bordeaux, France

I recently moved from Montréal to Bordeaux, France. It is an exciting and at times rather complicated adventure, and a constant reminder that I am a very lucky guy.

Violin thingy made by Galen!


Photos courtesy of Jean Fitzgerald and Tipper Fine Violins