Joseph Curtin

Joseph Curtin has built instruments for some of the most distinguished artists of our time, including Erick Friedmann, Ilya Kaler, Cho-Liang Lin, Elmar Oliveira, Yehudi Menuhin, and Ruggiero Ricci. In 2005, he was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship. In 2013, the “ex-Ricci” Curtin & Alf violin sold in auction for $132,000, a world record price for work by living makers. If you are currently in the market, traditional and ultralight instruments may be available for immediate purchase. Prices start and $60k (traditional) and $30k (ultralight) Otherwise, one can be built for you on commission. Call us at (734) 665-1303 or send an email. Please note that we deal only with instruments by Joseph Curtin or Curtin & Alf.
Joseph Curtin Studios is located just outside Ann Arbor, Michigan, a half-hour drive from Detroit airport. If you would like to visit, please contact us for an appointment and directions. Biography: Joseph Curtin is a violinmaker, researcher, writer, and 2005 MacArthur Fellow. Born in Toronto, Canada in 1953, he began violin lessons at twelve, then went on to study music and philosophy at the University of Toronto, and then viola with the Israeli soloist Rivka Golani. Curtin took up violin making under Otto Erdesz in 1977. He subsequently worked as a maker in Toronto, Paris, and Cremona. In 1985, he and Gregg Alf established the firm of Curtin & Alf in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Twelve years later, Curtin opened his own studios. Joseph Curtin and Fan-Chia Tao are co-founders and co-directors of the VSA Oberlin Acoustics Workshop. Curtin’s work with Claudia Fritz and Fan Tao has led to three papers on blind-testing violins, published in the Periodical of the National Academy of Sciences. Curtin is a frequent contributor to The Strad and Strings magazines. He has lectured internationally on the art and science of violin making, including physics colloquia at Stanford, Princeton, and Cornell Universities, and the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics. Curtin lives with his wife, singer/songwriter and sculptor Jesse Richards, in their home on the Huron River.
Contact Information
3493 West Delhi Road, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48103, US