Arcos Gonzalez, the workshop of Francisco Gonzalez, specializes in the construction, restoration, rehairing and repair of all kinds of stringed instrument bows. We sell our own crafted bows, along with antique, baroque and student bows, suitable for every need and every budget. We also set up violoncellos (bridges, body and fingerboards) and sell a wide range of instruments, whether they be for the student, the professional or to suit some other customized need.
He has been established in Madrid since 1983, and is in demand throughout Spain, as well as visited by musicians from many different countries who come with valuable bows to be repaired or rehaired in his shop Arcos Gonzalez.
With a wealth of experience and knowledge, Arcos Gonzalez also does evaluations and insurance of instruments and bows.
Francisco Gonzalez is the principal bow-maker – qualified and specialized. Founded in Spain in 1983, the Arcos Gonzalez workshop is located a few meters from the Teatro Real (Royal Theatre).
Arcos Gonzalez quality represents the best of the Cremona tradition – Cremona (Italy) being where the principal bow-maker obtained his diploma, apprenticed with Maestro Giovanni Lucchi and where he earned his Higher Diploma in Violoncello. These two facts serve to give Francisco Gonzalez a great deal of care, sensitivity and knowledge which he brings to the issues of sound production, applicable to both the bow and the rest of the instrument. Our workshop has to its credit numerous prizes and awards as testament to the excellence of our work.
In 2002, Francisco Gonzalez was called to join the prestigious and exclusive ENTENTE INTERNATIONALE DES MAITRES LUTHIERS ET ARCHETIERS D’ART (International Association of Master Luthiers and Bow Maker), a professional association comprised of the best luthiers in the world.
In Arcos Gonzalez we subscribe 100% of this Decalogue of Excellence created by Macarena Navarro-Reverter to craft products.
1. Craftsmanship: In order for an object to be considered the work of an artisan, it must have been created according to the rules of the specific art, recognized as an exclusive manual work, which is based on a constant dialogue between the mind and the hands. The role of any mechanical device utilized in this process is inferior to the one utilized by the hands.
2. Authenticity: The authenticity has to do with the idea of independent authorship. To determine authenticity, it often implies connecting a work with a specific author and context. Something is authentic if it is true and genuine, if it can be connected to a particular person, place and time, each of which reflects the historical, artistic and social values.
3. Talent: Talent, as the capacity to execute o develop an activity, is associated to the innate ability and creativity of a person. In the discipline of the artisan, the talent requires a practical and theoretical knowledge of the materials, the techniques, the accepted norms and rules of the craft and its application. It also implies preparation, a true comprehension of the ability and facility in carrying it out.
4. Creativity: It is the capacity to generate new ideas or concepts. In craftsmanship, it is a dynamic force, it is a blend of personal vision, passion and perfect ability, capable of finding an equilibrium within the functional limitations and the materials with the invention, by amplifying the rules of the art in order to satisfy the imagination and at the same time respond to the contemporary needs and tastes.
5. Innovation:Innovation, the capacity to change something that already exists by adding new elements; often is associated with new technology and, frequently, it is positioned in contrast with tradition. Nevertheless, it is what keeps alive the road toward the future. The crucial dialogue between innovation and craftsmanship produces materials, tools, forms, styles, functions and new original aesthetics which respond to the evolution of tastes, markets, costs and changing values.
6. Interpretation: It is the art of transforming an idea into a product. In the process, the person who interprets does the work of a translator or a mediator, basing himself on an ample base of knowledge in order to form one reality into another.
7. Originality: Originality is a delicate balance between the old and the new, the demand for innovative forms of applying centenary techniques in order to create something fresh and unique.
8. Territory: The word territory covers a rich mixture of ideas which unite an object with his creator and with the geophysical and social environment. The supply of materials and the home of a community of persons who transform the local natural and cultural resources into beautiful objects.
9. Tradition: Although the word tradition can evoke ideas of the past, it really describes the dynamic renovation and the constant of accumulated knowledge. Transmitted from generation to generation, tightly protected and developed within the close knit ambiance of shops or studios, families or small companies, communicated but never standardized. Tradition in the world of artisans describes the transmission and the evolution of complex knowledge and the continuity of a professional legacy.
10. Formation: The aptitude or expertise goes farther than just the knowledge of a trade to be able to teach, inspire and build future artisans. Mastery implies the capacity to recognize the potential of aspiring artisans and to be able to plant and nourish this knowledge. Among other things, the mastery of a trade and all the tools associated with it, requires a certain maturity to work in collaboration as a team with everyone who has access to the workshop.