A new photo from the Powerhouse Museum every day
This photograph from the 1940s shows the hands of violin maker Kitty Smith (1912-2005) shaping a violin with a tiny plane. Kitty was the daughter of Arthur Edward Smith MBE (1880-1976), Australia’s best known and most respected violin maker. Kitty studied acoustics at the Conservatorium of Music in Sydney and worked in her father’s workshop repairing violins. Kitty said:
Although working with my father, my work was always individual. Employed as ‘Violin Specialists’ for most of our lives, we worked on some famous instruments. However our own were always constructed at home.
As a working woman with family responsibilities (she could spent about one day per week on her own instruments), Kitty’s output was steady but not prolific, averaging about one instrument a year. She produced 55 violins, five or six violas and five cellos. She continued making violins into her eighties.
This is one of a series of photographic prints given to the Museum when we purchased a string quartet (two violins, a viola and a cello) made by Kitty Smith.
Post by Lynne McNairn
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