The ‘da Vinci of Violins’ Sells for $3.5million at Auction

A rare GUARNERIUS violin used by Régis Pasquier in the most prestigious concert halls throughout the world was sold by Claude Aguttes, of Aguttes auction house for 3.3 million Euros (£3.5m), in Paris on Friday June 3, 2022.

Aguttes Auction House sold this extremely rare violin that has belonged to world renowned violinist, Régis Pasquier for more than twenty years and has accompanied him in the world’s most prestigious concert halls.

“There are many violins, but this one is like selling a Rembrandt, a Goya or even a Leonardo da Vinci painting,” Sophie Perrine of Aguttes Auctions.

Prior to this auction, no Guarnerius “del Gesù” violin had come up for sale in the last 10 years, and no Guarnerius from the age of full maturity of the violin maker, had been acquired in the auction room in the 21st century.

Auctioneer Claude Aguttes, said: “This violin was seen and examined by great musicians who came to the exhibition and it was a musician who bought it: one of the seller’s wishes was that the instrument should live on. As this is the case I am delighted.”


Made in Italy in 1736 by the legendary Bartolomeo Giuseppe Guarnerius, known as “del Gesù”, this extremely rare instrument, which comes from Cremona, the cradle of violin making in Italy, fetched 3.3 million euros under Claude Aguttes’ hammer.

Régis Pasquier remembers the revelation of the exceptional sound power of the “del Gesù”, during the test session at the Salle Gaveau among a selection of 8 famous violins: at the moment of the contact between the bow and the strings, the resonance of the wooden body proved to be immediately different and projected the sound considerably further, thus offering the possibility of playing it in very large halls. “This instrument sounds like it belongs here; it has an exceptional resonance,” he says. 

In parting with his violin, Régis Pasquier is above all committed to passing on his knowledge to the younger generation. The artist believes that a certain respect is needed for an instrument such as the “del Gesù”, and it is time, for Régis Pasquier, to pass on the baton and entrust it to a musician who will continue to make this instrument live. And his dearest wish has been fulfilled thanks to the acquisition of his faithful companion by a violinist.

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