Erika Ciesielski founded the company Vienna Violin & Accessories, service and repairs in 2000.
She has been in the music business since 1992 and until 2000 she worked for the renowned company Thomastik Infeld in Vienna in the capacity of an export director.
Her husband Alfred Ciesielski (artist) wanted to support his wife and therefore he stopped painting for a while. (www.artsacis.at) He trained as a violin maker in Pittsburgh USA, Germany and Slovakia. In addition to managing the workshop he was responsible for consulting in the areas of marketing, web and catalog design. He started his carrier as a church painter and on top of this he got an eduction as an professional gilder. His craftmanship, his talent and the meticulousness to complete every work where the prerequisites for developing into an excellent string instrument maker.
It was 2009 when a customer visited the company Vienna Violin & Accessories to sign in for a service for his violin. It was an instrument that the brilliant Viennese violin maker Ferdinand Kugler had built in 1955.
Alfred Ciesielski and his wife immediately noticed the unique sound. At that time there were three other violins in the shop and these could therefore be compared with the Kugler Violin. The three violins were a Lemböck, a Ruggeri and a Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume. None of these three violins could match the sound of the Kugler Violin. Two of the owners said the same. From this point on, Erika Ciesielski knew that this master instrument, built in 1955, had to be recreated.
Many violinists of the famous Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra played a Kugler violin and also Herbert von Karajan and Sir Yehudi Menuhin have been owner of a Kugler violin.
Alfred Ciesielski was able to become friends with a family member of the late Ferdinand Kugler. This gave him access to all documents, the original model of the most appreciated violin model 1955 and also scroll models from the collection of the great master.
After opening some of his violins he recognized the perfection of the master´s work. You could also clearly see the meticulous work technique inside the violins. In the choice of wood, it was probably not so easy to be picky because of the post-war-period, therefore a not so nice flame was used at the bottom of the instruments, which does not ultimately influenced the sound.
After six years of research, we have finally reached the goal, to have created a violin of exceptional sound. Built on the base of a great Viennese luthier.
The employee and violin maker Patrik Samko has been a great help in recent years. Since 2021 Patrik Samko is the owner of the company Vienna Violin & Accessories.
Up to violin 49, all were created by the artist Alfred Ciesielski, the last 10 in collaboration with Patrik Samko. All rights to recreate this Kugler Violin, Model 1955 remain in the hands of Alfred Ciesielski.
The still existing Kugler Violins, Model 1955 can be purchased at the Vienna Violin store.